We all know the power of word of mouth. Positive or negative reviews impact the success of any product. In our current age of social networking, electronic word of mouth has the ability to make a product sink or swim faster than ever. Last Friday it seemed that Sacha Baron Cohen had created another monster hit with his new film Brüno. Early ticket sales on opening day had many Hollywood insiders predicting that Brüno would gross around $50 million on opening weekend. As it turns out, sales for Brüno peaked on opening day and actually fell the rest of the weekend, finishing with “only” $30.4 million. What happened? According to Time magazine, “Brüno could be the first movie defeated by the Twitter effect”.
Although Brüno won the weekend movie battle, it fell well short of initial predictions. Brüno certainly was a hit with many reviewers but its outrageous, in-your-face humor was too much for many movie-goers to stomach. A quick review of the thousands of “tweets” about Brüno on Twitter shows many harsh comments such as “im angry, apalled”, “Do not waste your money seeing Bruno” or “Worst movie I have ever seen”. With techsavvy moviegoers tweeting their opinions to millions of followers, Twitter trends have an instant impact on the success of a movie. In the words of Time, “Instant-messaging can make or break a film within 24 hours. Friday is the new weekend.”
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