The Simpsons Movie comes out today and all the world is in a flurry about it. All I want is a big pink glazed donut!!!!
The thing I noticed first was the Simpson Generator on the movie’s web site. The custom generated simpsons started showing up on all my friend’s Flickr accounts and I knew something was up. This show has a loyal fan base that still amazes me. They seem to bridge all ages and demographics and the people who started watching 20 years ago still tune in today. They all seem to identify with bumbling Homer (that embodies many women’s worst nightmares of a husband) and Bart, (who embodies most parent’s worst nightmares of what their child might become).
The site has a lot going on besides the simpson generator. There is an interactive map of Springfield that contains ways to interact with the simpsons through trailers, games and neat things they just thought up. (see: Bart’s naked skate)
Additionally they had a contest for all the towns named Springfield across the country to host the premier. They have the obligatory MySpace page, wallpapapers, icons, screensavers, mobile alerts, photos, downloadable tatoos and video. They have been all over online, TV and word of mouth media. I think this was pretty much a guaranteed money maker for both Matt Groenig and FOX based on the existing fan base, but when I saw it I was still pleasantly entertained even though I am not even a regular fan of the show. The theater all laughed in unison to the known gags that they are used to and the special suprises that were just for the movie. It was a real community event created around the community that identifies with the show… because they are reminded of themselves. These americans don’t have much ambition, like low level jokes and beneath all those screw ups are just a heart of gold just trying to do the right thing.
Note: The Simpsons Movie made $71 Million in the US and $167 Million worldwide in it’s first weekend’s opening.