So the future visited by Marty McFly and Doc Brown is finally here, although we don’t yet have flying cars, rehydrating food and self-drying clothes! Nobody may use fax machines and pay phones anymore and people certainly don’t wear two ties at once, but Back To The Future Part II’s prediction of Wednesday October 21st 2015 has turned out to be surprisingly close to reality.
Scanning fingerprints for payments have recently become a thing through Apple Pay and other similar offerings and smart homes are also starting to exist. VR glasses like Microsoft’s upcoming Hololens and the Oculus Rift were all correctly predicted, as were tablets, smartwatches that tell you the weather, Skype/Facetime, drones, multi-channel TV watching, 3D movies and a cinema box office dominated by movie franchises with multiple sequels. The Chicago Cubs might even win Baseball’s World Series this year as they’re amongst the final four teams in the postseason. It’s incredible just how much the film got correct.
The film’s huge fanbase has meant that pretty much ever since the film was released back in 1989, the anticipation surrounding the October 21st 2015 date and whether the predictions would come true has been around and this has led to some companies recently acting on the product placements they had. Pepsi Perfect was the drink of choice in Back To The Future’s version of 2015 and so Pepsi recently announced that it would be selling a limited run of the drink styled in the same design as seen in the film for $20.15. At the recent New York Comic Con they gave out free bottles to anyone dressed as Marty McFly, which resulted in huge crowds of people dressed as the time traveller.
In 2011 Nike sold a limited run of shoes designed like the ones Marty wore in the film. They were sold to benefit charity, but one crucial element was missing, self-lacing. Recently, Nike announced that they were planning on selling the shoe, the Nike Air MAG, sometime in 2015 with the self-lacing element. This is heavily rumoured to be happening today and has of course created a lot of mentions on twitter, with around 14,000 retweets on a tweet to Michael J. Fox that simply says “See you tomorrow”. But whether that tweet actually has anything to do with the shoes, we’ll just have to wait and see.
Both of these products are taking advantage of the desirability and collectors value that they have for fans of the film franchise. The announcements of them generated massive social media traffic and will probably continue to in the days ahead.
But these aren’t the only example of recent marketing based around the film, Ford (whose cars were used as the basis for the ones seen in the film) recently released this tongue in cheek video promoting a ‘Flux Capacitor upgrade’ for its cars.
And Universal, the studio that made the Back To The Future franchise, have released this spoof trailer for Jaws 19, the film whose holographic shark Marty ran into in 2015 Hill Valley.
In some ways, Back To The Future Part II and the vision of the future it predicted feel like they have almost shaped the real future itself. Fans of the film have strived to make those predictions a reality and no more so than with one of the most memorable items from the film, the hoverboard. Two different companies, Hendo and Lexus, are creating their own versions of the worlds first real life hoverboard, and whilst they might not yet be to the same ability as seen in the film, they’re still a lot more cool looking in my opinion than those segways without handlebars that everyone is calling ‘hoverboards’ at the moment.
This is all a great example of how brands and companies can capitalise on product placements and the anticipation and excitement surrounding a particular date, the social media sharing and discussion of these videos and products have caused the majority of them to go viral in the run up to today. Whilst Back To The Future Part II may now be a film about the past rather than the future, there’s no reason why the last few predictions of the film couldn’t come true in the coming years. Whilst we may still need roads for now, who knows what the future will bring, now where can I preorder my hoverboard?
There has recently been a hashtag trending on Twitter that focuses around removing a single letter from a film title to create a new and humourous result, #filmswithonelettermissing. Needless to say, it has proven to be very popular, trending for a number of days and spawning a huge number of suggestions, many complete with photoshopped images for the newly created films. Coincidentally, this is something that illustrator Austin Light was doing for the month of October, long before the hashtag started. His Inktober 2014 series features a different drawing for each day of the month, using the film typos of social networking site Reddit as subject matter.
This resulted in a collection of 31 hilariously witty images, each complete with a short altered synopsis for the new film. Below are a few of my favourites, you can view the whole set here.
Obocop – The story of how a police officer works through his PTSD and adjusts to his new robotic implants with the help of the sexy soothing sound of his oboe.
Finding Emo – An insufferable teenage fish runs away from home. His father contemplates searching for him.
Jurassic Par – Two dinosaurs set out to prove they’re more than just killing machines. Thanks to a loophole in the rules they find a spot on the PGA tour and golf their way to the top of the food chain.
Harry Otter – A young boy finds out who, and what, he is. Magic ensues.
Alen – The story of a lonely cashier named Alen who yearns for something more. Something like eating astronauts.
Found via Design Taxi
Its been a while since I last posted about one of my own projects on this blog (or even posted at all for that matter), so I thought I’d give you a little update. Before that though, I just wanted to talk about the fantastic new piece of work by one of my favourite designers, Olly Moss. Now, those among you who are avid readers of my blog (I’m sure there are some of you out there!) may remember the post I did on his solo exhibition from last year, or the one I did on alternative movie posters that was inspired by his work.
The poster he created for the 85th Oscars is another example of his great visual work. It takes every single one of the best picture winners from the past 85 years and visualises them as an Oscars statue.
Seen above are the statues for ‘The Hurt Locker’ and ‘Lawrence of Arabia’. They, like the 83 others, remain true to the original award, not straying too far from its iconic design. Moss’ ability to sum up each of the movies just by using these small statues is truly amazing, and its created something which is great fun to interact with and try to work out which films each of them represent.
So, we come back to my work. After completing and handing in all my work for the first semester of my second year (the work for which will be on my website soon), I moved on to a YCN competition brief for LEGO, which was to create a campaign that distinguishes LEGO from its competitors. This past week has been quite hectic for me as I also took part in a four day live brief to design a logo and pitch it for use by mothers organisation ‘Story of Mum’. Despite this, I managed to use the little free time I had, to settle on the concept of strength and inspiration for the LEGO project. I then used the below piece of work by street artist MEGX as inspiration and spent my Friday afternoon after the ‘Story of Mum’ pitch building bridges out of LEGO.
The point of this was to see whether my campaign could be an installation of an actual bridge in the environment made out of LEGO and whether it would support someones weight…
And it worked!! You know what, maybe I’ve missed my calling in life by choosing to become a graphic designer. Maybe I should become some sort of structural engineer or architect instead! 😉
So I found this the other day when I should have been finishing off work for the deadline I had on Friday, and it shows just how far website design has come since the mid 90’s. Space Jam was one of my favourite films when I was growing up and I’m a bit of a sucker for good web design at the moment after designing one for the past few weeks for a project of mine.
Retro design and a complete inconsistency across the pages make this website so bad its good! Who doesn’t want bright, colourful, slightly illegible text on a starry background with all manner of clickable objects and menus? Viewing it brought back some great memories of watching the film and I had great fun viewing all the pages and taking part in a trivia quiz I found by clicking on a randomly placed button. Is it too late to nominate this for best website of 1996?
You can check out the website here
P.s. thanks once again for helping my blog to another milestone of 6,000 views. Keep your eyes peeled for a redesigned website for my work coming soon!
Viral marketing is something which has started to become commonplace for big name movies before they are released. It has been used on many well-known movies, such as Prometheus, The Dark Knight and District 9 amongst others. However, it was first used in its infancy by The Blair Witch Project in 1999, using images of the cast before the events of the film to create a sort of missing person style back story for the characters on their website. Since then, viral marketing has grown into something even bigger and become more integral to the major successes of the film.