By Susan O'Neill Posted June 1, 2010, 12:35 PM EDT
TORONTO For the Canadian premiere of Sex and the City 2 on Wednesday, Warner Brothers Canada hosted a screening at AMC Yonge & Dundas followed by an after-party for 350 guests at One Restaurant in Yorkville. The studio called on Kris Menon of Your Brand Integrated Marketing Communications to design the space, in the Hazelton Hotel.
“It was really thinking about the theme of the film, the luxury brands, and the shopping, and this area just fit. And the food, of course, the food,” Menon said of the decision to hold the event at One.
“It's also a street-level venue; it feels accessible to the public to experience Sex and the City,” said Holly Nelson Stewart, manager of publicity and promotions for Warner Brothers.
Menon created three slightly different looks for the restaurant bar, main dining space, and the patio. “We wanted to empty it out inside and create a New York feel, but with a lot of Middle East pieces,” he said. “In the film, Samantha is approached at a New York premiere and asked to go to Abu Dhabi. She agrees on the condition she can bring the other three,” Nelson said.
Inside the space that typically serves as the restaurant’s main dining room, Menon created a lounge with oversize white seating from Contemporary Furniture Rentals, Pucci print pillows, white Louis Ghost chairs, Kartell lamps, and silver bornes. Sex and the City 2 posters hung on the walls.
“Out [on the patio] we went for heavy Morocco with authentic lamps and vibrant fabrics. We really tried to recreate a Moroccan cabana feel,” Menon said. Palms added a touch of greenery inside a corner tent, and a wall of tall evergreen trees from Amherst Greenhouses surrounded the patio, blocking the view from the street.
Rather than hand out gift bags, Warner Brothers took over the Giorgio boutique inside the hotel to create a gifting suite. “The idea was to create a New York boutique and make it more interactive than a traditional gift bag,” Menon said. At the end of the evening, guests could visit the suite to fill bags with items like Sarah Jessica Parker’s new fragrance, Sex and the City scarves printed with the New York skyline, and jewelry from Swarovski. “We wanted to capture the shopping of the film,” Nelson Stewart said.
About 350 guests, including media, industry executives, and talent like the cast of Degrassi and actor Neal Bledsoe, who appears in the film in a scene with Cynthia Nixon, attended the event.
In the weeks leading up to the premiere, Warner Brothers held a series of promotional events. “May 13 was the kickoff to the launch, with Sex and the City taking over Yonge-Dundas Square. We had a 15-foot ice stiletto shoe from the Iceman, Milestone's Grill and Bar served mocktails, and we had cupcakes from Chic Cupcake Boutique,” Nelson Stewart said. Organizers filled a Mercedes-Benz GLK350, the SUV Samantha drives in the film, with HP Mini 210 Vivienne Tam Edition Digital Clutch notebooks, and attendees had to guess how many were inside for a chance to win passes to the premiere and party.
On May 20, Warner Bros. held a shopping event at David’s Shoes on Bloor Street. Guests sipped on Sex and the City-inspired Skyy vodka cocktails and could have their hair touched up at a blow dry bar by Tony Chaar Salon. The film company also held events in Vancouver and Montreal. “In Montreal we took over two statues on Friday of last week, one of which was Queen Victoria [in honour of the Victoria Day holiday]. The theme was, ‘We all need a little glam.’ We dressed her in a silver gown and street teams handed out Sex and the City prizes to passersby,” Nelson Stewart said. “Starting on Thursday night, we have three ladies' nights out events happening at This is London, Brant House, and Tryst.”