Amy Powell

Senior VP-Interactive Marketing, Paramount Pictures

By Published on .

In a pre-"snakes on a plane" world, Amy Powell might have been an over-protective filmmaker's nightmare. The senior VP-interactive marketing for Paramount Pictures has a penchant for giving away a film's story arc. characters, costumes and mythology.
Amy Powell, Senior VP-Interactive Marketing, Paramount Pictures
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The 31-year-old exec is quick to suggest that choice tidbits from those closely guarded intellectual properties be disseminated to the percolating fan base, sometimes even before the movie has started production. Get out in front of the inevitable wave of internet chatter, she says.

If Ms. Powell's job was mostly buying online media, "I'd be so bored," she says. She'd rather create original content to hype Paramount's films and find ways to embed that material into new media places and devices. She organized a live chat recently that had the writers of next summer's big-budget action flick "Transformers" answer fan questions. "We want to give fans a first look at everything because we want their feedback," she says. "We put the writers out with no chaperones. And it was live on purpose-it wasn't filtered or polished."

Ms. Powell specializes in breaking new ground, whether it's a live global Q&A session with Tom Cruise and Steven Spielberg for "War of the Worlds" (long before Viacom Chairman Sumner Redstone dismissed Mr. Cruise from Paramount) or high-definition trailers on Xbox 360 Live or downloadable video diaries from the set of "Nacho Libre."

"She realizes that for a strategy to work it must be embraced by the end user, it has to feel authentic and it can't seem like a glossy studio sell," says Gerry Rich, Paramount Pictures' president-worldwide film marketing.

Ms. Powell was one of the first studio executives to put trailers, teasers and behind-the-scenes bits on Sony's PSP, helping to draw in the coveted young male audience for the Adam Sandler hit "The Longest Yard." A current program on aims to draw in Zach Braff fans for the flick "The Last Kiss" by using its much-touted sound track.

For "Nacho Libre," Ms. Powell armed star Jack Black with a high-def video camera so he could capture his particular schtick. The promo, dubbed "Jack Black's Confessional," became the most downloaded podcast on iTunes.

* Embeds content into new-media hangouts of cognoscenti

* Celebrates every movie's difference and connects with target market
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