You wouldn’t think that a sequel to Jurassic Park needs any special fanfare to top the holiday video charts. ”We know that we have a big movie,” says Universal Studios Home Video executive vice president Andrew Kairey, acknowledging both the blessing and the curse. ”We know that if we didn’t do anything we could probably sell about 70 percent of our goal. But the reality is that that other 30 percent is a big, big number.”
Exactly how big a number the company won’t say. But given that the average video store has sold more than 1,000 tapes of Lost World‘s gargantuan predecessor, ”There are very large expectations,” says Kairey. And a marketing effort to match. Universal isn’t doing anything very original to hype the Nov. 4 release of The Lost World: Jurassic Park, but what it is doing it’s doing endlessly: $50 million worth of promotion is about to hit like a tropical tidal wave, inundating TV, radio, magazines, and newspapers, not to mention the sides of city buses. Then there’s the Tropicana sweepstakes, the Discover Card binoculars offer … All told, the blitz should reach 98 percent of households 22.5 times, creating 8.5 billion consumer impressions. Yes, that’s roughly 3 billion more impressions than there are people on this planet.
Is it overkill? Not really. Video Business editor Bruce Apar notes that there’s another leviathan looming. ”Lost World‘s stiffest competition — and this helps explain why they have to cover their bets — will be Men in Black.” World, priced at $22.98, has just three weeks before the Columbia TriStar comedy is unleashed for about the same price. And MiB, remember, was the only movie to stomp T. rex last summer.