Over the holiday weekend I noticed that 20th Century Fox has been putting up street posters in my Manhattan neighborhood for its upcoming comedy "The Internship," the movie everyone is calling "the Google movie" because it was created with unusual cooperation from the tech giant. Now I can't leave my apartment without being reminded that it's coming out next week. Given the existing marketing barrage for "The Internship" -- particularly the ad nauseam airings of TV spots for it -- I'm starting to fear that any minute now the movie's stars, Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson, will bang on my door and demand I go see their shitty movie.
Yes, I just called a movie I haven't yet seen "shitty." I mean, c'mon, have you watched the trailer? No? Scroll down to enjoy the, uh, highlights, which include a joke about fisting, a joke about bullying that morphs into a joke about child abuse, and a shot of Vaughn getting punched in the face followed by a shot of Wilson getting punched in the balls (by a guy in a wheelchair, naturally).
As my colleague Cotton Delo reported in February, Google's wholehearted embrace of the film even scored it a rare bit of homepage promotion right under the Google search box. And as Jessica Guynn and Dawn C. Chmielewski wrote in the Los Angeles Times last week,
Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson may be the big names in the new comedy "The Internship," but the real star of the film is Google.... Google lent its brand to the 20th Century Fox movie and let the production film two days on-site without charging location or licensing fees.
Brainy staffers took on roles as extras (co-founder Sergey Brin appears twice, once wearing green neon slippers and riding an elliptical bike).
All of which raises the questions: What did the geniuses in Mountain View see in the script for "The Internship"? Did they even read it? Or were they just starstruck?
Probably seemed like a fun, feel-good branding opportunity at the time, but now...
FYI: "The Internship" hits theaters (in the balls) on June 7.