After a weekend where competitors ran for cover under the onslaught of "Captain America: The Winter Soldier," three movies launch this weekend aiming to draw attention from beyond the young male audience. "Rio 2" arrives three years after the original which opened to $39.2 million and social data suggests this sequel is set for a strong performance.
"Rio 2" will be looking to appeal specifically to family audiences, and that dictates using marketing platforms in a different way. While a large TV presence is intended to garner interest from kids not old enough for "Captain America's" red white and blue bluster, the digital campaign has been mainly geared toward convincing adults, with a strong focus on the voice cast and musicians featuring on the film's soundtrack, such as Bruno Mars and Janelle Monae. Marketing has also reached out to the Latino audience by playing on the South American setting of the movie, re-tweeting Spanish and Portuguese language accounts and Facebook featuring a crash-course in Portuguese with the "Rio" characters.
But how does "Rio 2" match up against this year's other family movies? "The Lego Movie" currently stands atop the list of 2014's biggest grosses (surely to be toppled by "The Winter Soldier" in coming weeks), while "Mr. Peabody and Sherman" is in fifth. Social stats suggest "Rio 2" should be able to force its way in between the two.
"Rio 2" bows with over 20 million video views, 86,900 Tweets and 73,100 searches, so it will likely start stronger than "Peabody," which opened to $32 million, had 15 million views, 28,000 Tweets and 56,000 searches. However, as the year's standout movie so far "Lego" debuted with much stronger stats with 34.4 million trailer views, 98,000 Tweets and 107,000 searches. Similarly, "Rio 2′s" Buzz rate on YouTube also falls squarely in between the two films with "Peabody" on the lower end at 0.24% and "Lego" at a strong 0.59% at release.
"Rio 2" is miles ahead in terms of fan count, but this is thanks to taking over the existing fan page for "Rio." However a 14% PTAT indicates over 1 million currently engaged fans is very positive and far ahead of "Peabody" or "Lego" on release, suggesting the fans who made the first movie a success will be turning out again.
Final Expectations: "Rio 2′s" stats suggest it will be soaring to a high total on opening weekend.
Relativity's "Oculus" is the latest low-budget release from Blumhouse, the producers of "The Purge," "Insidious" and the "Paranormal Activity" series, in conjunction with WWE Studios, which has supported the movie using its TV shows and "WrestleMania 30" PPV, as well as hosting screenings introduced by WWE superstars.
With "Winter Soldier" and "Rio 2" commanding much of the media attention, "Oculus" is aimed squarely at genre fans, which make horror movies such a success, particularly young females.
The official Twitter account has been re-tweeting messages from the cast, and positive reactions from fans and critics -- it re-tweeted Stephen King's praise of the film, for example. Thanks to establishing the hashtag #seeyourevil "Oculus" has solid Twitter numbers, a promising sign for a horror movie. These have been boosted with help from the MTV and "Teen Wolf" Twitter accounts, among others, which featured contests where fans could tweet to decide what evil acts the "Oculus" mirror would cause stars to do. The MTV website has also featured exclusive "Oculus" clips.
The Facebook page has employed a similar tactic, but focussed mainly on featuring positive reviews and catchy pull-quotes from critics. While the Facebook fan base for the film is small, more than half of the audience is engaged which suggests there is a core audience of fans interested in the title. "Oculus" gains even more Internet points for casting "Dr. Who" and "Guardians of the Galaxy's" IAmA/comments/21c0lh/mynameiskarengillanimanactressaskme/" target="blank" rel="nofollow">Karen Gillan as well as IAmA/comments/21vdac/heythisiskateesackhofffrombattlestar/" target="blank" rel="nofollow">Katee Sackhoff from "Battlestar Galactica" and "Riddick," who both hosted Reddit AMAs to cash in on their genre credibility.