News Column

True Blue: Smurfs 2 Sends Tiny Blue Heroes to Giant Silver Screen

June 13, 2013

YellowBrix

After conquering the global box office with their first 3D trip to the big screen in the live-action/CG animated global smash hit The Smurfs(TM), the world's favorite three-apple-high heroes are back on July 31 in Columbia Pictures / Sony Pictures Animation's The Smurfs 2 - and just as with the first film, Sony Pictures Consumer Marketing has teamed with corporations and licensees around the world to create a global promotional campaign that stands among the largest the studio has ever produced, it was announced today by George Leon, executive vice president, Consumer Marketing for Sony Pictures Entertainment.

Building on the success of The Smurfs, which took in upwards of $563 million at the global box office, Sony Pictures has amassed a program with more than 100 partners - from McDonald's to Wal-Mart to Toys R Us to the Discover the Forest public service advertising (PSA) campaign, and even blueberries!

In doing so, the studio is going beyond the traditional promotional partner approach to offer a multi-generational lifestyle- based program that takes Smurf enthusiasts from the fashion runway to social media channels, and from mass merchant and department store-based programs to quick service restaurant experiences, allowing consumers to interact with the Smurfs in ways they never have before. Many of the key promotional partners from the first film are returning to join in the Smurfs 2 campaign, and they are joined by a host of fresh, relevant, and exciting promotional partners, that, combined, will more than double the total number of promotional partners involved and triple the total promotional value and marketing support for The Smurfs 2, giving consumers the ability to "live" the Smurfs brand and discover the Magic of Family.

"The success we had with the first film went way beyond even our wildest expectations - merchandise flew off the shelves, and in some cases, completely sold out," said Leon. "Because we had such a great experience on the first film, we were able to re-assemble the anchor promotional partners from the last campaign and build on them with an expansive new program, and this time, retailers are taking a bigger position on Smurfs product to meet increased consumer demand. Each of these collaborations - whether new, returning or expanding - is a true testament to the broad appeal of The Smurfs. Across generations, demographics and lifestyle categories, The Smurfs interact with consumers in ways few other brands do."

The Smurfs 2 promotional partnership highlights include:

McDonald's, which is bringing Smurfy fun to millions of fans around the world to celebrate the Magic of Family. The Smurfs 2 is McDonald's most anticipated promotion for 2013, with a focus on positive nutrition messages for children. The Smurfs 2 Happy Meal will highlight fruits, vegetables and dairy along with unique Smurf toys in North America, Europe, Asia, Middle East, Australia and New Zealand and Latin America. In addition, select markets will feature entertaining TV, print, digital and social media elements. Examples include:

North America's Smurfy celebration with fun packaging, in-store activities and displays, 16 Smurf characters and a special Smurf appearance on the new Happy Meal app, McPlay.

McDonald's UK will give kids the chance to become part of the Smurf gang through clues on the Happy Meal box, along with offering fun Smurf masks, a book voucher for one of two Smurf books and a new fruit option.

Restaurants in Europe are inviting customers to join the family adventure to find Smurfette through special in-restaurant activities, displays and premiums.

McDonald's Australia and New Zealand will share a Smurf-tastic experience in restaurants featuring special blue menu items, Smurf programs and a fun competition with prizes ranging from a trip to MovieWorld to The Smurfs 2 Ubisoft games.

Across Latin America, McDonald's restaurants are providing a Smurfy good time for customers through special displays, unique toys and fun digital components.

Jakks Pacific returns as the master toy partner with an even bigger and better program, offering even more SKUs to their line of Smurf plush figures, activities and play sets. Build-A-Bear Workshop is also back as a licensee, offering consumers the opportunity to make their own Smurfette or Naughties, Vexy and Hackus - the new Smurf-like characters from the film - with an opportunity to make them even Smurfier with the purchase of apparel, accessories, or a sound chip playing the Smurfs theme song. The retailer is supporting the campaign with a custom TV spot, created in conjunction with Sony Pictures Animation.

Several retailers are also a key part of the marketing mix for The Smurfs 2. In addition to selling a variety of licensed merchandise, Wal-Mart is teaming up with The Smurfs 2 on a nationwide tour of five Smurf-ified Dash electric vehicles designed by the team from the hit TV series "West Coast Customs." Macy's is hosting a Great American Drive-In event: a series of outdoor screenings across the country, allowing fans a refresher of the first film prior to seeing The Smurfs 2. Claire's features a back- to-school themed promotion utilizing Smurfette and Vexy and targeting Claire's Club customers. And Toys R Us is expanding on their very successful program for the first film with an eight-week campaign highlighted by an in-store Smurfs Feature Shop - a dedicated Smurfs shopping area; the promotion also includes custom Smurfs gift cards.

Taking the Smurfs' global appeal to the fashion runway was the goal of a trio of licensees. Junk Food returns as a licensee, with their line of trendy t-shirts, fashion tops and bottoms for juniors, women, men and children; earlier this year, Sony Pictures Animation teamed up with Junk Food Art House on Le Look Smurfette, a New York Fashion Week runway show inspired by the Smurf Village's favorite blonde and featuring a hip all-blue collection. For The Smurfs 2, new licensees for the fashion-conscious Smurfs fan include Thursday Friday (totebags, handbags, keyrings and scarves) and Glam House (jewelry).

Ubisoft returns as the video gaming licensee, offering products on consoles and handheld as well as creating a Facebook game application, and Beeline continues its involvement as the mobile game licensee.

Additional licensees include Pressman Toys, which returns with new Smurfs games and puzzles; Schleich, a longtime partner, will create a new set of movie figurines; Goldie Marketing, which is developing die-cast, pull-back remote control cars and other toys; Mega Brands, which is adding to its Smurf Mega Bloks line; USAopoly, who have created a Smurfs Collector's Edition of the classic board game Monopoly; footwear company Crocs, who are creating a line of Smurfs Jibbitz shoe charms; and Suave, the haircare brand, who will be in homes everywhere via an exclusive line of tear-free hair and body washes for kids. Among additional promotional partners, Ashley Furniture is in the mix this time around, with in-store displays featuring themed kids' Smurf rooms, window and mirror clings, price tags, and floor graphics; Ashley will also sponsor a sweepstakes in which entrants can enter for a chance to win a trip to Turks and Caicos (provided by Beaches Vacations). Finally, Color Me Mine will be creating a Smurf ceramic for purchase and hosting themed "Kids' Night Out" events at each participating studio.

Also getting a taste of the action are several food licensees and promotional partners. Haribo, who have been producing a line of Gummi Smurfs in Europe for many years, are introducing the treats in America for the first time. Menchie's Frozen Yogurt is going blue nationwide with a limited-edition Smurfberry flavor. It'Sugar, one of the largest specialty candy and gift retailers, will sweeten the pot by supporting the release with a delicious line of Smurfs- branded candy bars. Buddy Fruits will create three multi-pack Smurfs themed products and three blended fruit & skim milk 4-packs, supported by in-store displays as well as a sweepstakes in which a family can win a trip to Paris, France. And Gourmet Trading Company returns as a promotional partner, with the Smurfs featured on their millions of packages of blueberries nationwide. This time, the on- pack promotion will feature a Smurfs sticker on every package.

In addition to these many retail and promotional partners, the Smurfs are also giving back as they team up with Discover the Forest, a PSA campaign designed to encourage children and their families to reconnect with nature. Developed by the U.S. Forest Service and the Ad Council in partnership with Sony Pictures, Discover the Forest will be launching Smurf-centric PSAs which will be distributed nationwide and run in donated time and space. The campaign includes social and web portals that inspire families with ideas and activities for how to enjoy the benefits of the forest all year long, including a Smurfs activity sheet with fun forest facts about the Smurf and their natural habitat.

In this truly global campaign, The Smurfs 2 will be smurfing the world blue with key promotional partners.

Capri Sun has teamed up with the studio on a multi-market in- pack gift with purchase promotion in Europe and the Caribbean. As an additional overlay, consumers can enter a sweepstakes to win tickets to the local premiere or private screenings of the movie. The program will be supported with a custom TV spot in Germany and Netherlands and a five-second TV tag in the other markets. Additional support includes over 13.8 million film-themed packages, and POS in more than 15,000 stores.

Haribo candy is running a multi-market European promotion with a custom 45 second 3D cinema spot running in France, UK, Germany, Poland, and Italy. Additional support includes film messaging on over 5 million packages of candy and POS displayed in over 8,500 stores.

Chupa Chips is a multi-territory licensee, creating lollipops with Smurf packaging.

Ferrero is running a multi-territory promotion with millions of surprise chocolate eggs, supported by a huge advertising campaign including TV.

Throughout Europe, the Middle East, and Africa, Starwood Hotels is running a 30 second TV spot to be aired on their in-hotel channel in 244 hotels, and offering families a 50% discount on any second room booked. In addition, children under 12 eat free and receive a film-themed activity book.

Multi-territory international retail partners include Albert, Tesco, Konzum, Cora/Match, and Total petrol.

In France,

Candy Up is running an on-pack promotion with an online contest to win licensed merchandise supported with 23 million film-themed packages, a 20 second TV spot and POS in 1,500 hypermarkets.

Additional promotional partners include Photomaton.

In Germany,

Stars and Rice yogurt is adding a blueberry flavor for a limited time to their product line and running an on-pack sweepstakes to win tickets to the local premiere supported with a TV spot and 1.5 million film-themed packages sold in 5,000 supermarkets.

Kuschelweich fabric softener and Sunil detergent is running an online sweepstakes for a chance to win the first Smurfs film on DVD supported with 4 million film-themed Kuschelweich packages, 1 million Sunil packages, and displays in 3,000 stores.

Milkana packaged cheese is running an online sweepstake for a chance to win Smurfs licensed product supported with messaging on 4 million packages sold in 9,000 supermarkets.

Additional promotional partners include PreGel.

In Italy,

Garnier is running a gift with purchase program with their Ultra Dolce shampoo product supported with film messaging on 420,000 units of shampoo, POS in 9,000 stores and through TV, Outdoor, Print, and in-cinema channels.

Hertz is running a sweepstakes for its Hertz Club Members who can enter for a chance to win a cruise for a family of four, and other prizes when they book a "Hertz family collection" vehicle. The program is supported with a digital campaign and POS in 225 locations.

Additional promotional partners include Best Western, Bassetti, Negroni, and PreGel.

In Spain,

Johnson & Johnson is running a gift with purchase promotion where consumers who purchase a bottle of Johnson's baby shampoo receive a ticket to the see the movie. The program is supported by a 20 second TV spot and 120,000 film-themed packages.

Brioche Pasquier pastries is running an on-pack sweepstakes on 250,000 film-packages, supported with POS in 2,439 locations.

Additional promotional partners include Best Western, Bassetti, Negroni, and PreGel.

In Brazil,

Smurf-themed activity centers will be created in malls around the country including Shopping Boulevard Londrina, Boulevard Shopping Mall, and Shopping Villa Lobos.

CNA Language School is creating 10,000 activity booklets to help teach students basic English through film-themed questions and visuals in their 700 schools.

Additional promotional partners include Perdigao frozen food and Agua de Cheiro fragrances.

In Mexico,

BBVA Bancomer bank is running a sweepstakes for the chance to win a family trip to Europe or other prizes from Sony Electronics. The promotion is supported with a 30 second cinema spot, POS in 1,250 bank branches, outdoor, print and online.

Additional promotional partners include Kraft Foods, Saber Integrarse, Del Monte and Valle Redondo.

In Asia, the studio is collaborating with Sony Recording Media on a gift with purchase promotion supported with on-pack stickers on 35,000 hard disk drives and POS in 550 stores.

Sony Electronics and Sony Mobile will be teaming up to bring the Smurfs to life in Sony stores around the world with programs in many major markets.

In The Smurfs(TM) 2, the sequel to Columbia Pictures/Sony Pictures Animation's hybrid live action/animated family blockbuster comedy The Smurfs, the evil wizard Gargamel creates a couple of mischievous Smurf-like creatures called the Naughties that he hopes will let him harness the all-powerful, magical Smurf-essence. But when he discovers that only a real Smurf can give him what he wants, and only a secret spell that Smurfette knows can turn the Naughties into real Smurfs, Gargamel kidnaps Smurfette and brings her to Paris, where he has been winning the adoration of millions as the world[sup 1]s greatest sorcerer. It's up to Papa, Clumsy, Grouchy, and Vanity to return to our time, reunite with their human friends Patrick and Grace Winslow, and rescue her! Will Smurfette, who has always felt different from the other Smurfs, find a new connection with the Naughties Vexy and Hackus - or will the Smurfs convince her that their love for her is True Blue? The film is directed by Raja Gosnell and produced by Jordan Kerner. The screenplay is by J. David Stem & David N. Weiss and Jay Scherick & David Ronn and Karey Kirkpatrick with a story by J. David Stem & David N. Weiss & Jay Scherick & David Ronn, Based on the Characters and Works of Peyo.

About the SmurfsThe story of the Smurfs - a property created by Peyo - started in 1958 with the creation of comic books which were later brought to both the big and small screen. Over the years, the little blue characters haven't just limited themselves to the page and the screen. They have inspired records and CDs that have sold millions of copies, entire collections of figurines and toys, and many more products. In all, more than 3,000 derived products have been produced and leading brands and companies have spread their messages worldwide with the help of the Smurfs. A multitude of new projects appear regularly, thus making the success of the Smurfs planetary!

About Sony Pictures EntertainmentSony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) is a subsidiary of Sony Entertainment Inc., a subsidiary of Tokyo-based Sony Corporation. SPE's global operations encompass motion picture production, acquisition and distribution; television production, acquisition and distribution; television networks; digital content creation and distribution; operation of studio facilities; and development of new entertainment products, services and technologies. For additional information, go to http:// www.sonypictures.com.

About Sony Pictures AnimationSony Pictures Animation produces a variety of animated entertainment for audiences around the world. The studio is following its worldwide comedy hits - the 2012 monster hit comedy Hotel Transylvania, the 2011 hybrid live action/animated blockbuster The Smurfs, and the 2009 mouth-watering Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs - with The Smurfs 2 in July 2013, and Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs 2 in September 2013. Sony Pictures Animation, in conjunction with Aardman Animations, has produced two critically acclaimed feature films: the CG-animated family comedy Arthur Christmas; and the Academy Award(R) nominated stop-frame animated high-seas adventure, The Pirates! Band of Misfits. In 2007, Surf's Up also received an Academy Award(R) nomination for Best Animated Feature Film. The division, whose first feature film Open Season led to a very successful movie franchise, turned 10 in 2012. Sony Pictures Animation is an operating unit of Sony Pictures Digital Productions.

* Website: http://www.sonypicturesanimation.com/ * Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SONYPicturesAnimation * Twitter: http:// twitter.com/sonyanimation * Tumblr: http://sonyanimation.tumblr.com/ * YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/user/SonyAnimation

About Lafig Belgium S.A.Lafig Belgium is the owner of the rights to produce audio-visual works based on the Smurf universe and of the Smurf worldwide licensing rights (together with IMPS). Lafig Belgium is controlled by the heirs of Pierre Culliford, better known under his pseudonym Peyo, the author/creator of the Smurfs. For 50 years, the Culliford family has controlled the Smurf characters and all licenses worldwide.

SOURCE Sony Pictures Entertainment; Sony Pictures Animation

Originally published by Sony Pictures Entertainment; Sony Pictures Animation.

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