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Paramount, Disney, Universal Expected to Launch Super Bowl Movie Ads

Variety logo Variety 1/31/2017 Brian Steinberg
© Provided by Variety

Hollywood is getting ready to tackle the Super Bowl as hard as longstanding sponsors like PepsiCo and Anheuser-Busch InBev.

Disney’s studios, NBCUniversal’s Universal and Viacom’s Paramount will join the roster of advertisers supporting Fox’s February 5th broadcast of Super Bowl LI, suggesting that hundreds of millions of viewers will get a gander at trailers for a handful of coming films, along with the usual commercials for beer, candy and cars.

A spokeswoman for Paramount said the studio would promote”Transformers: The Last Knight” during the game and tout the Scarlett Johansson starrer “Ghost In The Shell” in a spot before the kick off. Universal will run at least a trailer during the event, but a spokesperson for the studio declined to offer details. The studio has releases including “Fifty Shades Darker” and “The Great Wall” on tap.  Disney declined to comment on what it might choose to promote. Projects slated for later in the year include a live-action reboot of “Beauty and the Beast,” a new chapter in the “Pirates of the Caribbean” series and Pixar’s “Cars 3.” Last year, Disney’s Marvel took part in a Coca Cola ad that featured its Ant-Man and Hulk characters.

Time Warner’s Warner Brothers typically does not advertise in the Super Bowl, though last year it took part in a pre-game advertising effort by Turkish Airlines that gave a nod to the film “Superman vs. Batman: Dawn of Justice.” Spokespersons for 20th Century Fox  and Lionsgate could not be reached for immediate comment.

Movies have long played an important role in the Super Bowl. Over the last five broadcasts, studios have run as few as three trailers and as many as 7 each year.  CBS’ broadcast of Super Bowl 50 last year contained six different trailers accounting for $28.8 million in advertising, according to Kantar, a tracker of ad spending, compared with seven trailers worth $35.2 million in NBC’s broadcast of Super Bowl XLIX in 2015.

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