February 14, 2005 at 05:00 AM EST

Miramax isn’t known for — how to put it? — subtlety in its Oscar campaigns. But in a turnaround, the studio has gone virtually subliminal in touting Martin Scorsese’s The Aviator. Note the music in a new TV spot: ”Intermezzo” from Mascagni’s opera Cavalleria Rusticana. That’s right, the theme from Scorsese’s notoriously overlooked Raging Bull. ”It’s a classy spot that speaks to the tone of the movie,” demurs Miramax spokesperson Amanda Lundberg. Plus, if you play it backward, it whispers, ”Marty was robbed.”

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