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July 30, 2012
Are American Moviegoers Suppose to Know Who Richard Ayoade is?
— Posted by Kenny Miles
In what might be the biggest lack of advertising clarity of any summer movie, Fox is listing an actor named Richard Ayoade as apart of the cast for “The Watch.” Yet, who is he? He is prominently featured on the poster and in the trailer with A-list actors. Sure most American moviegoers know who Ben Stiller, Vince Vaughn, and Jonah Hill are. What other films has Richard Ayoade starred in? It seems foolish for the studio to prominently feature an actor in the trailer no one knows without giving viewers an introduction. A more appropriate ad campaign would say something such as “and introducing Richard Ayoade.”
I wonder if Ayoade starred in an overrated TV show everyone talks about, one that I don’t watch. This is becoming common practice in recent months. I’m not knowledgeable with my TV actors and more are making appearances in movies. Ayoade’s famous claim to fame is directing the indie film “The Submarine” and starring in some British TV shows. I never got around to seeing that quirky movie last year. Should everyone know who this guy is? His body of work on IMDB didn’t ring a bell. Does anyone know who he is and what significance he’s made in the Entertainment Industry? Am I just being prudish thinking Ayoade shouldn’t have been featured in the P & A for “The Watch?”
Clarification: Due to the comment section, I want to say a few things. The issue I had with “The Watch” is in the MARKETING of the film. Fox might not have had time due to the last minute changes in the campaign due to the Trayvon Martin shooting. Yes, the world may not revolve around America, but if you are advertising a film in the States, it must be familiar to an audience in order for it to sell. If Fox were advertising “The Watch” in another country where Richard Ayoade is well known, then placing his image and name on the poster would make sense. He isn’t well known in America. It’s not a bad thing, just a reality. I did mention that I am not knowledgeable with my TV actors, let alone ones from shows from other countries. I don’t keep tabs on international TV shows when I barely can keep up with foreign films released in American theaters. My understanding of TV mostly consists of word of mouth from friends. I’ve had two friends already recommend the IT Crowd and I will give it a chance.
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Whether something is overlooked by Hollywood or whatever business trend has captured the Entertainment Industry’s attention, Kenny Miles loves to talk about movies (especially the cultural impact of a film). He covers various aspects of movies including specialty genre films, limited release, independent, foreign language, documentary features, and THE much infamous "awards season." Also, he likes to offer his opinion on the business of film, marketing strategy, and branding. He currently resides in Denver, Colorado and is a member of the Denver Film Critics Society critics group. When he isn’t writing, Kenny channels his passion for interacting with moviegoers (something most movie pundits lack) as a pollster for the market research company CinemaScore and working as floor staff/special events coordinator in the film community. You can follow him on Twitter @kmiles723.
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