‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ Uses Curiosity to Overcome Credulity

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Right out of the gate they told you “this might not be the best idea.” That may have been exactly the right tone to take with the PR for Marvel Studios’ upcoming “Guardians of the Galaxy” movie.

One of the biggest hurdles any comic book movie faces is attracting non-fans to the theaters. Marvel has scored well in this regard in recent years. But, is it enough for it to take the biggest risk yet? Betting the farm — or at least a big-budget movie — on a little-known comic book about an even lesser-known team of cosmic outlaws turned anti-heroes, it may have been better off making (another) “Firefly” movie.

But, Marvel chose “Guardians,” and, in what Ronn Torossian calls an incredible acute sense of reality, the folks at Marvel approached marketing for the movie in exactly the right way. The trailers, including the latest one released about a week ago, are irreverent, self-critical and the perfect mix of stunning graphics, fun adventure and silliness. Just like the source material.

Giving the marketing a tone very similar to the approach of the source material is attracting the right core base of fans while also creating enough buy-in points for tire kickers. And, the mixture of eye-catching visuals, limited-but-punchy dialogue and the singalong-song soundtrack has all the hallmarks of a surprise summer blockbuster.

“Guardians of the Galaxy” may not be the best idea Marvel has had recently, but it decided to do it anyway. And once it decided to, Marvel fully committed to do the best “Guardians” movie it could do. And that might prove to be the best decision after all.

Ronn Torossian is an author and entrepreneur.

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