Starring former "Saturday Night Live" comedian Adam Sandler and "E.T." actress Drew Barrymore, New Line Cinema's "Wedding Singer" grossed more than $80 million during its theatrical run last spring. The flick piggybacked Gen X and Gen Y nostalgia for '80s pop music. And with youngsters still swooning from "Titanic," the market was ripe for a fun romantic comedy.
Still, the film didn't seem destined for after-market greatness. When the video was released in August at $24.99, its sales reminded the studio of its own "Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery." An unexpected hit, "Austin Powers" matured into a video brand name that has driven retail sales and rentals over time. And its $15 sticker price made it harder for its young, bargain-hunting fans to resist.
So hoping for similar success, New Line will relaunch "Wedding Singer" in December, at $14.98.
"Instead of having a strong week or two at mass merchants at a higher price, we can have it there hopefully for months and months," said Steve Ramirez, New Line Home Video's VP-marketing. "Once we have that shelf space, it really opens the door to building a brand."
And promotional partners have signed on. Modern Bride will promote a sweepstakes in an upcoming issue; "Wedding Singer" videos and sound track recordings will be given to hundreds of first- and second-prize winners. Andrew Jergens Co.'s Biore Pore Perfect strips and Maverick Records, which markets the sound track, are on board with separate $5 rebate offers.
New Line Home Video will promote the less-expensive video with print ads in December issues of teen and female-targeted magazines. Creative and media buying are being handled in-house.