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Snakes on a plane

Chris Vallance | 23:34 UK time, Thursday, 17 August 2006

It's the premiere of Samuel L Jackson's high-altitude herpetological thriller Snakes on a Plane Friday. Of course given recent events, vipers in the overhead lockers may seem the least of our worries, but something tells me this won't stop an awful lot of people going to see a film that's become a huge internet craze

Snakes on a Plane is to film on the web what the Arctic Monkeys were to music on the net. The movie attracted massive early buzz from bloggers who thought the name was a hoot; possibly even cooler than "Ask a Ninja"

As the excellent round-up on wikipedia points out much of the initial buzz about the film came from a blog post by a former S.O.A.P writer, Josh Friedman (warning: strong language) The concept quickly snowballed with fake movie tailers, posters, parody competions all helping to make the film, at that stage little more than a quirky title, a cult hit.

What differentiates this from other movie marketing campaigns, however, is how quickly the film company, New Line, embraced the blogs reaction; a reaction they encouraged by supplying viral content and engaging with the internet community. As reported on Up All Night in March social networking site Tagworld launched a competition to write music for the films soundtrack. There were even five additional days of filming which the Hollywood Reporter claims "came about because of intense and growing fan interest in the movie," bumping the rating up to an R and including some of the lines from the spoof movie trailers on the net:

..the filmmakers added more gore, more death, more nudity, more snakes and more death scenes. And they shot a scene where Jackson does utter the line that fans have demanded.

Some will greet this clever use of the web with a hiss, others will be pleased that a big media company has seen the positive side of having its content "remixed" by bloggers; much will depend on whether the film lives up to the fans high-flying expectations.

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