CULTURE POP: MOVIE MARKETING: 'LARGER THAN LIFE' REBORN AS FAMILY MOVIE

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A comedy starring Bill Murray and an elephant that amounted to peanuts when first released is hoping to do better on home video repositioned as a family film.

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer's "Larger Than Life" was marketed last fall as an uproarious romp for fans of the "Saturday Night Live" alum. But the story of Mr. Murray's cross-country trip with a pet pachyderm was panned by critics and shunned by moviegoers, who spent about $9 million at the box office to see the flick.

Postmortem research conducted by MGM Home Entertainment discovered, though, that the movie worked with kids, who found both the premise and Mr. Murray entertaining.

"In some ways, we in home video have it easy," said Blake Thomas, senior VP-marketing at MGM Home Entertainment. "We can watch what theatrical did and learn from their choices."

In TV ads that will break a week before the video reaches retail on April 29, "Larger Than Life" will re-emerge as a family film. Ads will target kids and mothers.

Creative was done in-house, with planning and buying handled by Focus Media, Los Angeles.

The family-oriented marketing attack also includes a cross-promo and sweepstakes with Borden Foods' Cracker Jack.

The video will also carry a rebate offer for $7 when consumers buy "Larger Than Life" and "The Black Stallion," "Tom Sawyer" or "My Summer Story," all marketed

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