Discussion in 'Star Trek Movies: Kelvin Universe' started by Blue_Trek, Jul 14, 2009.
Oh, very good point there. Are you Guinan, by any chance?
ST XI IS a very comic-bookish movie. Definitely in the TNG-movies "action-hero Picard defeats the bad guy" vein. Maybe that's why Americans liked it so much.
Whereas Europeans don't like comic-bookish style at all, as evidenced in the fact that at least 70% of people I know follow Heroes religiously even though it's never even been shown on TV in this country or on any of the cable channels available and that it's 10 times more popular than many TV shows that aired on TV and were well promoted. Must be also the reason why "X-Men: Wolverine" has done so "poorly" worldwide.
The audiences worldwide are also known for their sophisticated taste in thought-provoking quality stuff such as Dan Brown adaptations.
Not sure if has already been posted...found it today as part of a news item on TrekWeb. This Variety article outlines the VERY SUCCESSFUL international marketing campaign that Paramount used for ST09.
Paramount did all it could to promote this movie. Bottom line is that Trek is not as popular outside of North America as other franchises. Hopefully the good buzz and super (for Trek) foreign box office will lead to an even larger foreign box office for the sequel.[/LEFT]
It was so successful that a bunch of people from other countries (Spain, for instance) say the same things I do, that there was very little promotion, and if you weren't actively following what was going on with the movie, you could have missed that it was even in the theatres?
I've never thought that Star Trek is "too American" a franchise myself, but maybe audiences in foreign countries think differently. I'll admit, I don't know for sure, but I just brought it up as a possible explanation, at least in part, for why Trek's popularity overseas is dwarfed by its popularity in North America.
EDIT: Doh, posted above.
Why so defensive? I was just throwing an idea out there.
And I commented on your idea. That's what happens when you throw it out there. People tend to say what they think of it.
Why so defensive of an idea you just threw out there?
KingstonTrekker, thanks for the link.
Argh! It is nothing to do with being negative. The argument I was responding to was that there was not much of a Trek fanbase outside the US. My point was that if the film was designed to bring in people entirely new to the "franchise", that would be irrelevant.
I have a feeling that if the local arms of Paramount in each country aren't convinced a certain film will be a hit, then they won't put as much effort into it, and there's little the parent company in the US can do if the cinemas don't book a certain film into enough screens, or put up the posters and cardboard standees, or order stock of the promotional lenticular drink cups, etc.
Sounds like Paramount UK didn't do very much, while the campaign here in Sydney, Australia, was pretty good. I assume Paramount US helped to foot the bill for the Sydney gala premiere - that wouldn't have been left only to Paramount Aust., but our distributors seemed to be confident the movie would do okay.
It's funny, there are Melbourne-based TrekBBSers here who complained bitterly that Melbourne "wasn't doing anything" to promote the film. Then I happened to spent a week in Melbourne last April, on vacation, and there were ST movie posters everywhere I went, and all the new ST novels had been air-freighted into Melbourne bookshops. (Usually Simon & Schuster Aust. sea-freight the books, and they arrive three months after the US release.)
Back in Sydney, there were also posters everywhere in the time between gala premiere and opening night. The trailers ran on TV all the time, in some major prime time shows. I thought the promotion was excellent. But still, some people say they never saw any evidence of promotion.
The other day a local friend asked me when the new movie was finally coming out. ???????? Whaaaaaat? He must have had his head buried in the sand - his only effort to find the new movie, it seems, was to look for a poster outside his local cinema each time he drove by. Somehow he had managed to avoid noticing that the movie had been running for eight weeks in almost every cineplex in Sydney? Plus two stints at IMAX, where most screenings had the "House Full" signs out.
It's not as if this guy doesn't have an Internet connection. And he belongs to the same international email listserv as I do, and he was surely noticing the reviews coming in from members around the world?
You can lead horses to water, but some are still gonna die of thirst. And no amount of advertising is gonna help them!
But "not much of a fanbase" would seem to apply to the US, too, then. Did you see the numbers of people who watched "Enterprise" in the US? The percentage of Australians who identify as ST fans is probably not that different to the percentage of US citizens who identify as ST fans.
How are you defining "the Trek fanbase"?
None of the ST movies have been made for "the fanbase". It really is too small a group, even in the US, to support a ST project. The most successful ST movies (and TOS in 70s syndication reruns, and TNG Seasons 3-7 in prime time first-run syndication) made their money by appealing to audiences way beyond "the fanbase".
The thing is: fandom is different today. The world is different. In the early 80s and until about 1995, the best way to find out news about forthcoming ST projects and conventions was to join a local club, or the Official Star Trek Club. "The fanbase" appeared to be more easily measurable. Since the late 90s, that necessity to be a part of organised fandom has decreased, as access to things like GEnie, Newsnet, the Internet, etc. People can be ST fans without having to make conscious decisions to join anything.
It was interesting to hear recently that "Starlog" magazine was folding, after all these decades, to attempt to rethink how to become more relevant in the 21st century. If it ever comes back, it certainly won't be a monthly magazine. More likely to be an interactive website with podcast inteviews or something.
Yes, that's my point. It wants to reach the non-fans. But it would need a lot of advertising to reach those people who aren't already Trek fans. It had that advertising in America, I don't think it did internationally.
EDIT: Just read Therin's post -
What can you do?
Well, as I was typing the term "first fandom" in my post, I started thinking of the large number of the cast of TOS (and guest stars) who are now aged in their 70s and 80s - and people like Bjo Trimble, who were there at the very beginning - and who are simply not as active in fandom any more. (Mind you, she's still active in lots of other activities, just not ST.)
A while ago we lost Joanie Winston ("The Making of the Trek Conventions"; "Star Trek Lives!"). And many of ST's writers, actors, directors, etc are gone. Since many of the first fans were the same ages as the cast/crew, it seemed a sensible comment that many of the "first" fans have passed away - or at least moved into a demographic that simply doesn't go to the movies any more.
And it did.
Apparently not everywhere. And you can guarantee that Paramount bean counters are already weighing up if the amount spent in each country translated to box office.
^ Which I suppose leads to one of two options - either they go all-out with advertising in those nations to try and boost the performance, or they simply write them off as having only a limited box-office potential and either match or decrease the level of spending.
Do you guys remember those threads before the movie came out where we found and posted the movie trailer in so many different languages.
So they had the languages done, for the international markets, even had that awesome 2 steps from hell one in every language it would be dubbed into for release.
Seriously if that trailer in your own language wouldn't get you interested in the new "Trek" movie nothing ever will.
Wait there is one thing, "Tom Hanks" as a Captain of a federation starship
JJ MAKE IT HAPPEN for XII, that would give us the boost we need for the international market.
It's not just poor promotion and advertising, there are also countries that just don't dig SciFi (western europe).
I'm from The Netherlands, where SciFi (and Star Trek in particular) is an absolute no-go for the average movie goer.
If you'd mention to your friends, or in college that you've seen the new Star Trek, your social life is pretty much done. :P
And, to no surprise and despite positive reviews in newspapers/internet etc, Star Trek absolutely bombed overhere. It has already fallen to the 24th(!!!) spot in the 2009 Yearly Dutch Box Office charts.
Well behind other Hollywood productions like Watchmen, Knowing, Terminator Salvation, X-Men Origins: Wolverine, Marley and Me and Night at the Museum 2.
Star Trek on various 2009 European Box Office Charts:
Netherlands, The (24)
As for France, I can't remember any Trek movie staying more than one or two weeks in the theater (I think FC stayed two weeks). Except this one! Four weeks!
You call it failure, I don't.
I don't think its anything to do with Sci-Fi and everything to do with the name.
Indeed. Transformers is sci-fi, and that hasn't had any trouble making money outside the US. Hell, I think it had less hype in Australia than Star Trek, and opened about four times bigger.
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