‘Viral Cinema’ talks of judicious use of social media

The day when Facebook, Twitter, and online blogs become the most sought-after marketing media for movies might not be far, if some from the cinema industry, who have quite successfully used these platforms to market and even launch their movies, are to be believed.

Speaking at ‘Viral Cinema,’ a seminar on social media organised by the Graduates of FTII (GRAFTII) here on Tuesday, Neeraj Ghaywan, who quit his job as a new media marketing manager to join director Anurag Kashyap for works such as Gangs of Wasseypur and his own independent films like Shor; director Kaushik ‘Q’ Mukherjee, known for his unconventional ‘pocket’ movies and documentaries that are among the most-searched online; French producer Margarita Seguy; and film editor B. Ajithkumar all stressed on the judicious use of social media platforms for more than mere marketing of movies.

Mr. Ghaywan, stating that the advantages of having direct online conversations with one’s prospective audience were unlimited, described how Gangs of Wasseypur and its sequel too had milked platforms like Twitter to the maximum.

The movie, which had a special screening for popular Twitter handles and well-known independent bloggers, saw its lingo leading to Hindi tweets, probably for the first time on Twitter and with poster competitions and quizzes on Facebook as well, drawing more viewers than a movie marketed in the conventional way would have drawn.

“The audience loved the movie and it was they who marketed it for us,” is how Mr. Ghaywan put it, stressing that movie marketing efforts would require one to stay tuned to the culture and milieu of the movie.

Mr. Mukherjee, dwelling on the clever use of graphics for the crucial visual impact on social media platforms, said more content-oriented movies that moved out of the industry loop would come up in the near future.

Revenue did not matter on social media, he said, adding that it was how many people one had managed to get to see one’s film was the yardstick.