CBS Films Goes All Out with Big 'Inside Llewyn Davis' Ads in NY Times
Yep, it's awards season. With the Oscar nominations voting closing this week, CBS Films is running one hell of a unique/ballsy marketing campaign in the NY Times for a film that is, indeed, one of the best of the year - the Coen Brothers' Inside Llewyn Davis. So far they've run two full-page ads in the Times for the new Coen Bros film, one of them featuring a list of over 400 critics' names (causing Twitter to go crazy in the afternoon) that have called Inside Llewyn Davis one of the best films of the year. The other is the now infamous tweet from NY Times' critic A.O. Scott talking about listening to one of the songs from the film about a folk musician, played excellently by Oscar Isaac (who also deserves a nomination). Photos below.
Here's the full double-page NY Times ad for Inside Llewyn Davis, as seen in the Arts section January 6th:
This isn't the only big, bold Inside Llewyn Davis ad that has been appearing recently in the NY Times. Over the weekend, an ad showed up that featured just one quote - one from NY Times' own critic A.O. Scott who was praising the film in a funny sort of way. "I'm gonna listen to the Llewyn Davis album again. Fare thee well, my honeys." he wrote, referring to the song "Fare Thee Well (Dink's Song)" that Oscar Isaac sings. It's actually a charming tweet and they highlight it in a very powerful way, with an elegantly written "The best picture of the year" added at the bottom. Nice. Here's the ad in full as seen in the newspaper January 4th:
While the ad is bold and unique, it unfortunately encountered a bit of controversy as the quoted tweet is actually edited. Many quickly checked A.O. Scott's twitter stream to find that his original tweeted included another line about "you all keep fighting about Wolf of Wall [Street] and [American] Hustle", referring to the discussions raging online, but that was nowhere to be seen in the actual print ad. In addition, Scott was not paid at all or had any notification or approval over the ad, which also caused many to question (see ReadWrite.com) whether it was ethical of them to use this tweet without informing him, editing it without his approval. Nonetheless they just wanted to promote their film alone. Here is Scott's original tweet in full:
You all keep fighting about Wolf of Wall St. and Am Hustle. I'm gonna listen to the Llewyn Davis album again. Fare thee well, my honeys.
— a. o. scott (@aoscott) December 31, 2013
Here's another funny response from one of our friends and a fellow film critic, James Rocchi, who tweeted:
BREAKING: Two-page ad repeating 400 humans praising film in NYT may have cost more than combined salaries of said 400 praise-ers.
— James Rocchi (@jamesrocchi) January 6, 2014
Thanks again to @TheFilmStage for first finding and posting this in high res above. Now go see the film!
Joel & Ethan Coen both wrote and directed Inside Llewyn Davis, which was originally inspired by real-life musician Dave Van Ronk. The story chronicles a struggling musician's time as a larger-than-life presence in the 60's folk music scene in Greenwich Village, known for the famous folk-music haunts and mentoring musicians such as Bob Dylan. Oscar Isaac, Justin Timberlake, Carey Mulligan, John Goodman, Garrett Hedlund, Adam Driver and more star in the film which also brings back O Brother Where Art Thou music producer T-Bone Burnett also working with Marcus Mumford of Mumford & Sons. CBS Films released the film in limited theaters on December 6th, but it's expanding in more theaters this weekend.