Movie Trailers, Whats the Big Deal?
Movie Trailers are special because it’s everyone’s chance to be a movie critic. You see the tailor made clips and you can pass judgment on them with the people you went to the theater with. Nothing is cooler than going to see a new movie and seeing a badass trailer of a film coming out you had no idea existed. Not every trailer does the movie justice but when it’s done right, it can get you really hyped to see it. For now I won’t be focusing on the bad trailers and save that for another post, instead today I will focus on the trailers I personally thought were awesome.
My personal Favorite Movie Trailers In No Particular Order
- The Crazies (2010)
- The Dark Knight (2008)
- Pulp Fiction (1994)
- Watchmen (2009)
- The Matrix (1999)
- Rumble in the Bronx (1995)
- 300 (2006)
- Mission Impossible (1996)
- Quantum of Solace (2008)
- Grind House (2007)
Movie Trailers that get an Honorable Mention
- Sin City (2005)
- Miami Vice (2006)
- Resident Evil (2002)
- District B13 (2004)
Fun Facts about Movie Trailers
- Did you know that the MPAA rates trailers as well as movies? Instead of ratings like R, PG, and PG-13 they use a color system. Green means it’s approved for the audience of the film the audience is seeing, Yellow means it;s approved for age-appropriate audiences (internet trailers only), and Red means restricted and is only shown before R and NC-17 rated movies. The trailers color rating is shown before the trailer when it shows the movie’s rating. The trailer ratings are referred to as Green Band, Yellow Band, and Red Band.
- The MPAA mandates that theatrical trailers are no longer than 2 minutes and 30 seconds. Major studios however get to exceed that length once per year. There are no time restrictions on home video or internet trailers.
- The first trailer shown in a U.S. movie theater was in November 1913, when Nils Granlund, the advertising manager for the Marcus Loew theater chain, produced a short promotional film for the musical The Pleasure Seekers.
- Up until the late 1950s, trailers were mostly created by National Screen Service and consisted of various key scenes from the film being advertised, often augmented with large, descriptive text describing the story, and an underscore generally pulled from studio music libraries. Most trailers had some form of narration and those that did featured stentorian voices.
- In earlier decades of cinema, trailers were only one part of the entertainment which included cartoon shorts and serial adventure episodes. These earlier trailers were much shorter and often consisted of little more than title cards and stock footage. Today, longer, more elaborate trailers and commercial advertisements have replaced other forms of pre-feature entertainment and in major multiplex chains, about the first twenty minutes after the posted showtime is devoted to trailers.
- Some trailers use “special shoot” footage, which is material that has been created specifically for advertising purposes and does not appear in the actual film. The most notable film to use this technique was Terminator 2: Judgment Day, whose trailer featured elaborate special effects scenes that were never intended to be in the film itself.
- Since the edited movie does not exist at this point, the trailer editors work from rushes or dailies. Thus, the trailer may contain footage that is not in the final movie, or the trailer editor and the movie editor may use different takes of a particular shot.
- A common technique is including music on the trailer which does not appear on the movie’s soundtrack. This is nearly always a requirement, as trailers and teasers are created long before the composer has even been hired for the film score—sometimes as much as a year ahead of the movie’s release date—while composers are usually the last creative people to work on the film.
- Every year there are three main events that give awards to outstanding movie trailers: The Key Art Awards, presented by the Hollywood Reporter, and The Golden Trailer Awards. While the Golden Trailer Awards allow only trailers to be entered in the competition, the Key Art Awards pick winners in all creative parts of movie advertising, from trailers and TV spots to posters and print ads. The yearly Key Art Awards ceremony is often held at the Kodak Theater in Hollywood.