In case you don’t follow super hero movies as closely as I do, Spider-Man: Homecoming is the newest installment in the world of webslinging, and it’s wonderful. (I’ll do my best to keep this about your video strategy, though.) My trending topic for post in my “What’s Trending in Video” series is inspired by the Spider-Man: Homecoming trailer for showing what became, in many people’s eyes, an iconic moment when Iron Man and Spider-Man soar through the air in Brooklyn, presumably into battle. But, that image never even appears in the film.
When did this become a thing?
It’s not exactly a new concept to promote a film with content that’s not actually in the film. You can find lists of these occurrences online, and they’re actually pretty fun to learn about. The simplest explanation? The scene was cut from the film after the trailer was released. For Spider-Man: Homecoming, that’s a sweet notion, but a Screencrush interview with Director Jon Watts reveals the true story.
That iconic shot of Spider-Man and Iron Man zooming through Brooklyn never actually was going to be in the final cut of the film. “I think what happened was in the very first trailer they wanted a shot of Spider-Man and Iron Man flying together,” Watts says. “And they were going to use something from the Staten Island Ferry [scene], but it just didn’t look that great….We couldn’t just create a whole new shot, so let’s just use one of these shots of the subway; put them in there.”
Perhaps Watts’ marketing gurus knew, just like Michael Keaton’s villainous Vulture in the film, that times are changing. Films don’t just get a teaser and a trailer anymore. Now there has to be teaser one and two, trailer one and two, Super Bowl exclusive media spots, and NBA Finals exclusive media spots. Perhaps the reason for these uniquely created scenes is that if the studio used only content that we’d actually see in the film, we’d consume the whole film piece by piece before it was released.
What does that mean for your video strategy?
We should be smarter about the content we’re creating, so like with Spider-Man, our content can satisfy our audiences’ very large appetites. A few years ago, we could get away with only posting our 2-3 minute video and slightly modifying it based on the channel. Now, we should do more than recycle and reuse, which means trimming down our 2-3 minute version to 60 seconds for Instagram isn’t enough.
How do we do that? I’m glad you asked! While one of these ideas must happen organically, the best way to ensure you capture what you need the first time around is to take extra time in development and pre-production to plan the additional shots. You can…
Use content you recorded to promote the same ideas as your main video in a different way.
- Deliberately record additional content to promote some of the same ideas as your main video.
- Share some of the funny outtakes or the beautiful video clips that don’t make it into the final cut.
- Plan different scenes for photos or videos that take advantage of the same people and places and use them in a different way than your main video.
- Show a behind-the-scenes look or unique perspective of a shot that may or may not be in the final cut.
As we look at this trend, in which movie studios produce special content just to satisfy that huge audience appetite, we should think of all the ways we interact with our own audiences and how we can do more with less by planning ahead and making better use of our time and resources during video shoots and editing. Finally, speaking of how you use your time, if you haven’t seen Spider-Man: Homecoming yet, I highly recommend it!