It's funny that the movie industry is so upset that the millions they spend marketing shitty films (e.g., Sucker Punch) at Comic-Con doesn't translate to sales. As if drenching nerds in posters and ten second promo clips can overcome the ripe stink of flopsweat on a film.
Movie Studios Reassess Comic-Con - NYTimes.com
Comic-Con, as a growing number of movie marketers are realizing, has turned into a treacherous place. Studios come seeking buzz, but the Comic-Con effect can be more negative than positive. The swarm of dedicated fans — many of whom arrive at the convention in Japanese anime drag or draped in Ewok fur — can instantly sour on a film if it doesn’t like what it sees, leaving publicity teams with months of damaging Web chatter to clean up.
“It’s a red-letter opportunity, but you shouldn’t go simply because it sits there on the calendar,” said Michael Moses, co-president of marketing for Universal Pictures. “You have to be absolutely certain you have goods ready that can really make a difference for your film.”
Even a joyous reaction at Comic-Con, which takes place in San Diego from July 21 to 24, can skew expectations, as a platoon of studios learned last year, if hard-core enthusiasm doesn’t spill into the mainstream.
Warner got burned with “Sucker Punch,” which had fans vibrating with excitement in July but failed in its March release. The millions that Disney spent on “Tron: Legacy” at Comic-Con had a less-than-fantastic payoff. A stunt involving video of attendees trapped in coffins made a splash for Lionsgate’s “Buried,” but the film sold just $1 million in tickets when it opened two months later.
“Scott Pilgrim vs. the World” was the big alarm. That Universal movie was the belle of last year’s convention, and the studio spent heavily to make it so, draping the entire side of a skyscraper with an ad, for instance. Released just three weeks after the convention, “Scott Pilgrim” fizzled and the $60 million movie sold just $32 million in tickets.