A&E Network is supporting the Aug. 12 premiere of season five of its reality series Criss Angel Mindfreak with an extensive cross-platform promotional campaign.
The new season of the series, which stars magician/performer Criss Angel, will feature five, one-hour specials marketed under the umbrella title, "The Five Lives Of Criss Angel." The marketing campaign will include several tactics, including outdoor promotions featuring a 3-D billboard in Los Angeles showcasing built-out coffins; 3-D tombstone taxi cab tops in New York; and a series of ads in the free daily New York newspaper AM NY, handed out by street teams dressed as mourners that play into each of the episode themes, according to A&E officials.
On the online/gaming front, the network has created a game dubbed "Kill Criss Angel" on its Criss Angel homepage that allows fans and foes alike to decide whether they want to help or slay him as he attempts dangerous stunts. In addition, Facebook Connect allows users to display to their friends whether or not they ultimately helped or killed Angel.
A second online game, "The Five Lives of Criss Angel," is an augmented reality game which allows players to control the onscreen action via hand gestures through a Web camera.
The network has also teamed up with Sony's Playstation 3 Home Virtual Environment product that will allow PS3 users to watch Criss Angel Mindfreak vignettes within the game's virtual world. In addition, users have the opportunity to win custom virtual items, including a branded coffee table and coffin couch to accessorize their personal apartments in the virtual world.
Digital billboard advertising will be used throughout various PlayStation Home spaces to promote all elements of the campaign and to encourage tune-in to the series, according to A&E.