‘Episode VII: The Force Awakens’ commercial partner Kraft is linking Star Wars nostalgia with middle America father-son bonding for its new movie-led mac & cheese campaign.
The first of a torrent of blockbuster brand work linked to the late December launch of the latest episode in the biggest movie saga of them all – Star Wars.
Rolling out on 19 October, a full two months before the film goes on general release, Kraft is leading its film tie-in product promotion with a spot for its Star Wars-shaped macaroni and cheese.
The commercial comes in both 15- and 30-second versions and plays on the commitment of movie memorabilia nuts to keep their Star Wars collectibles in pristine condition.
The narrative follows a father showing his son a room filled with Star Wars memorabilia – all ‘mint in box’ – including the limited-edition boxes of Kraft macaroni and cheese that feature Yoda, Darth Vader, R2D2 and C3PO.
Both TVCs (which are scheduled to air in the USA until 21 December) also drive viewers to Kraft’s digital Star Wars interactive hub at http://www.kraftstarwarsroom.com/ which offers fans a chance to explore some of the 750-plus genuine Star Wars collectibles displayed in the commercials.
These collectibles have been carefully curated by Rancho Obi-Wan – the organisation which boasts the Guinness Record for the world’s largest private Star Wars collection in the world.
In return, of course, Rancho Obi-Wan is being given eight different boxes of Star Wars Kraft macaroni and cheese for its permanent collection.
After all the product packaging has been designed to be a collectible set as each individual box only shows half a face so consumers will need to purchase two of each to make up full character profiles.
In addition to the new collectibles site and the twin spots, Kraft’s Star Wars campaign, developed by agency Crispin Porter + Bogusky, also spans sponsoring Pandora Radio’s Star Wars Day programming (on 4 May), plus in-store, digital and print work its range of Star Wars products: which also include noodles shaped like Yoda, Darth Vader, R2D2, C3PO and an X-wing fighter.
The print strand of the activation will be led by placing two-page ads featuring R2D2, Yoda and an X-wing fighter in issues of People Magazine – which will link directly to downloaded versions.
‘We’re putting a lot more emphasis on this because the fit is just so good both in terms of the love for the brand and the intergenerational appeal,’ argues Kraft macaroni and cheese brand manager Scott Glenn.
We feel a ‘Great Disturbance’ too.
From the somewhat saccharine, middle-of-the-road America TV ads, to the more innovative digitally downloadable print work and digital radio sponsorship strands, to us the entire initiative seems a little inconsistent in approach.
Perhaps we simply can’t get past the lack of synergy between the property and the partner?
After all, nothing says epic space adventure quite like mac’n’cheese.
Mind you, we’ll all just have to get used to it, as Kraft’s work will be the first of a Star Wars sponsorship galaxy.
After all, Star Wars: The Force Awakens also has partnerships with Covergirl (& Max Factor), Duracell, FCA US (Fiat Chrysler), General Mills, HP, Playstation and Verizon.
Lucasfilm says all the partnerships include custom creative campaigns and activations that promote the film and the products ahead of december’s release.
‘We are thrilled to be working with such a stellar roster of promotional partners,’ adds Lucasfilm general manager Lynwen Brennan.
‘Our partners have all delivered original, stand-out campaigns that capture the familiar fun and excitement of our galaxy far, far away that we hope will delight fans as they get ready to experience Star Wars: The Force Awakens.’
Kraft MacNCheese YouTube:
Kraft Star wars Collectible Digital Hub:
Crispin Porter + Bogusky: