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'The Imitation Game's' Oscar Campaign Is Taking an Interesting, Less Cumberbatchian Approach

By Vivian Kane | Miscellaneous | January 2, 2015 |

By Vivian Kane | Miscellaneous | January 2, 2015 |


It’s For Your Consideration season, that time of year when a new slew of ads pop up, attempting to re-market every movie as The Most Important movie. Looking at these award-based ads, the posters for The Imitation Game stand out as being unusual among their competition. Looking at the movie’s marketing campaign, initial ads were the standard fare: pull quotes about how great the movie is, how Cumberbatchian Cumberbatch is.
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But as we move into the dark heart of awards season, professional Oscar winners The Weinstein Company is taking a different approach: focusing on Alan Turing himself.

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This makes sense. The Oscars are all about perception of Importance. It’s not at all unusual for a movie to be spun after its release to hit a better angle. As The Wrap points out, this re-skewing is where Weinstein is a viking.

In the past, Weinstein has been a master at finding a resonant message in the later days of a campaign, positioning “The King’s Speech” as a universal story about finding your voice, turning “The Artist” into a grander statement than it initially seemed and repositioning “Silver Linings Playbook” from a crowd-pleasing comedy to a highly personal drama about mental illness.
And while The Imitation Game is a fine, perfectly serviceable movie, it’s nothing compared to the man himself. What do we think? Is this a cheap, manipulative ploy, or is it worth giving awards to the memory of Turing, even if the movie doesn’t necessarily deserve them? Or is it both? I’m going with both.