Screenvision Partners With Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre to Produce Comedic Short Films for Movie Preshows
New York – (Jan. 17, 2007)
Screenvision, the global leader in cinema advertising, has signed an agreement with critically-acclaimed comedy troupe The Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre (UCBT) to create comedic short films for Screenvision’s digital entertainment preshow. The first film in the series, “Ordering Popcorn”, will run on Screenvision’s nationwide network of digital screens through January 25, 2007.
Under the agreement, Screenvision and UCBT will produce comedic short films with storylines generally related to the movies, the movie industry and the moviegoing experience. This activity continues Screenvision’s strategy to develop high quality pre-show entertainment, rekindling an era when moviegoers looked forward to a cartoon, short film, newsreel or other programming prior to a feature film. Screenvision will also use UCBT to produce original branded entertainment content for its advertisers.
“Enriching the viewing experience is essential for alternative out of home media, and in our case provides measurable ROI for all involved – consumers, exhibitors and advertisers.” said Matthew Kearney, president and chief executive officer of Screenvision. “Our investment in themed preshows returns high levels of consumer satisfaction and consumer engagement, and we expect the product of our partnership with UCBT to contribute positively to the organic, engaging and consumer-friendly advertising environment we are creating.”
The first film produced under the partnership offers a light-hearted look at the Hollywood audition process. “Ordering Popcorn” features actors auditioning for a role in a fictitious movie for which the short is titled. Each actor impersonates a Hollywood celebrity or archetype ordering popcorn.
“Working with Screenvision on this project gives our actors, writers, producers and students an unrivaled opportunity to showcase their work on a national level,” said Matt Walsh, a founding member of UCBT and the director of “Ordering Popcorn.” “And we are thrilled to participate in Screenvision’s vision for bringing fun and excitement back to the pre-movie experience.”
Screenvision was the first cinema advertising company to exhibit cinema preshow specials, including the Halloween-themed “Screamvision” which was sponsored by Samsung, the holiday-themed special “Screenvision: Home for the Holidays” which was sponsored by Army National Guard, the award season special “Screenvision on the Red Carpet,” produced in partnership with E! Entertainment, “Screenvision’s Summer Music,” sponsored in part by Verizon Wireless, and a tribute to 2006 action films entitled “Lights, Camera, Action!,” which was sponsored by Canon. Research conducted by Taylor Nelson Sofres shows consumer receptivity to Screenvision specials averages at 93.5%.
“UCBT has a loyal following among young fans of comedy and their point of view will translate well in entertaining moviegoers, the majority of whom are under 35 years-of-age,” said Stu Ballatt, senior vice president of marketing for Screenvision. “This partnership also bolsters our production capability in the branded entertainment arena. We believe many of our advertisers will wish to take advantage of our ability to create and produce brand-driven stories that entertain and engage the consumer on the big screen and that can be ported throughout the advertiser’s digital media mix.”
Headquartered in New York, N.Y., Screenvision is the world’s foremost cinema advertising company, offering on-screen advertising, in-lobby promotions and integrated marketing programs to national, regional and local advertisers and providing comprehensive cinema advertising representation services for its theatrical exhibitor partners. In the U.S., the Screenvision cinema advertising network is comprised of nearly 15,000 screens in over 2,300 theatre locations across all 50 States and 92% of DMAs nationwide, and delivers approximately 700 million consumer impressions annually through more than 150 theatrical circuits, including 10 of the top 15 exhibition companies. Screenvision is a joint venture between ITV plc (LSE: ITV), the UK’s largest commercial television network, and Thomson (Euronext Paris: 18453; NYSE: TMS), a global supplier of technology, services, and systems to the media and entertainment industries. For more information: http://www.screenvision.com.
The Upright Citizens Brigade (Matt Besser, Amy Poehler, Ian Roberts, and Matt Walsh) came to New York, from Chicago, in 1996. After staging their award winning sketch comedy show and introducing their critically acclaimed brand of cutting-edge improvised comedy to New York audiences they founded the Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre now located at 307 W 26th Street in Chelsea. Last year the UCB Theatre opened a second venue in Los Angeles located at 5919 Franklin Avenue in Hollywood. UCB Theatre features some of the best comedy through both venues seven nights a week. In addition to the popular live entertainment UCB Theatre is also the operates one of the largest comedy Training Centers in the world with students appearing on and writing for stage, television and major motion picture productions and the internet. For more information: http://www.ucbtheatre.com.
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