By Jenny Berg Posted March 23, 2009, 11:02 AM EDT
CHICAGO Paramount Pictures' new film I Love You, Man opened in cities across the country on Friday. To promote the movie on the eve of its debut, Paramount declared March 19 “National Man Date Day,” and staged advance screenings and after-parties in markets from Washington to Atlanta.
In Chicago, after a screening of the film at Webster's Place Theatre, approximately 300 locals kept the night going at Sheffield's, where a gag-filled after-party played off the movie's cheeky male-bonding theme. To produce the event, Paramount Pictures's marketing team tapped the local branch of Terry Hines and Associates, a company that specializes in advertising and promotion for movie houses. Janet Golen, a senior publicist at Terry Hines, oversaw planning efforts.
At Sheffield's, a Rock, Paper, Scissors tournament had guests competing to win free tickets to a Cubs game. Later, a round of movie trivia saw partygoers wracking their brains to remember the finer points of films such as Wedding Crashers. The prize for the night's proven movie buffs? Nose- and back-hair trimmers, which Sheffield's staffers tossed unceremoniously into the crowd when a guest correctly answered a question.
Promotional materials were in no short supply. With beer served on branded coasters, staffers in T-shirts blazoned with the movie's name, and similarly designed napkins crowning tables and bar tops, guests got constant reminders of the evening's film of honor. And cocktail chatter followed suit: Over specialty beers and $4 “Bromance” shots (a Jameson whiskey-based concoction), partygoers rehashed their favorite lines from I Love You, Man.
When polled, most guests said they heard about the happening through ads in the local newspaper Red Eye, though Terry Hines reps also used radio spots, street teams, and Facebook to promote the event.
The series of parties followed the film's premiere in Los Angeles on March 17, where a collection of similarly guy-centric vignettes dotted the red carpet.