There are maybe two reasons for revamping a movie’s ad campaign: The film does bad business or it wins an Oscar. But rarely does a studio take a new advertising approach before a film even opens, as Warner Bros. did with its campaign for The Pelican Brief. Originally, the Pelican poster featured a larger-than-life Julia Roberts with another tiny shot of her and costar Denzel Washington in the corner. Understandably, Washington was not pleased. Stars of his magnitude routinely have a ”favored nation” clause in their contracts, which guarantees equal billing in all areas-including advertising. Did he threaten a lawsuit? ”Let’s say we sat down and we worked it out,” says Washington. Warner Bros. prefers to think of the change as a ”strategic” move. ”Our (original) concern was that Denzel was in posters for both Philadelphia and Pelican Brief,” says a studio spokesman. But the new ad, featuring the serious-looking duo huddled over a computer, has done nothing to hurt the film. Brief has grossed $61 million since it opened Dec. 17.
Posted January 14 1994 — 12:00 AM EST
- 'This Is Us' casts 'Longmire' star Adam Bartley in recurring role
- 'Star Wars,' Beyoncé among most popular fandoms ever
- Emma Caulfield's TV Diary: Warming up to 'This Is Us'
- Are these the best opening title sequences of all time?
- Please watch Kevin Hart’s reaction to this cat
- 'The Leftovers' creators announce third and final season premiere month
- Erika Girardi defends 'RHOBH': 'It's not just a bunch of bitches'
- Victoria's Secret Fashion Show 2016: See Photos From the Catwalk
- Books Gift Guide 2016: 31 Books For Your Wish List
- The 11 Most Prolific TV Holiday Movie Actors
- Go Behind the Scenes of EW's Chrissy Teigen Photoshoot
- The 'Office Christmas Party' Cast Decks the Halls With Merry Mayhem
- The Best Gifts For 'Gilmore Girls' Fans