The Independent Film Channel kicked off a new branding campaign last week, with the first in a series of animated ads poking fun at what it takes to make such theatricals.
The spot, called "Dance With Pain" and created by director/actor/writer Bob Balaban (A Mighty Wind, Gosford Park), spoofs the pitch process.
In the commercials, the protagonist talks up his picture, which centers on the "unionization of a sausage factory." Then one executive in the board room puts in her two cents about "changing the weiner-makers to little drug dealers," before another OKs the project by saying: "We're going to do the picture. We don't care if we make a dime."
Seth Green (The Italian Job), Jennifer Coolige (American Pie), John Michael Heggens (Gosford Park) and David Raschce (Just Married) all provided voiceovers.
All told, IFC plans to create five animated spots, each of which will run over the course of a month. Future commercials will include contributions from Richard Dreyfuss, Joan Rivers and Janeane Garafolo.
The initial media plan began to unfurl on Nov. 14, with on-air promos and presentations on IFCTV.com. The spots are also slated to run before films at Landmark Theaters and art-house cinemas around the country.
" 'Dance With Pain' takes a humorous look at the cinema industry from both the independent filmmaker and the studio executive's points of view, " said Ed Carroll, IFC executive vice president and general manager, in a statement. "IFC's pseudo-production/image campaign continues our tradition of not taking ourselves too seriously."