Cineplex crafts a love letter for moviegoers

Audiences are being courted back to theatres with a campaign that evokes an "escape" to other worlds.

Cineplex wants Canadians to remember how much they love to escape to the theatre as it launches a new national campaign in line with the full reopening of its 160 locations across the country.

“Theatres are an affordable, easy entertainment escape for people, as we’re drawn into captivating stories and guaranteed to be taken to far-off places. Our research reinforced that throughout the pandemic, already busy Canadian lives were beyond stressed,” says Sara Moore, SVP of marketing for the company.

“We heard from consumers how they deeply missed the movie theatre experience. Seeing a movie in a theatre is an event, an experience, and no matter what we are leaving behind, even if it is just the laundry, an escape is always welcome.”

The platform, called “Where Escape Begins,” was developed by long-time agency partner Zulu Alpha Kilo in partnership with Cineplex’s own in-house marketing team. At the heart of the campaign is a 50-second spot Moore calls a “Love Letter” about the cinematic experience.

“From speaking to consumers, we really tapped into the moment the lights go down in the theatre that draws you into the multi-sensorial experience of people, sights, sounds and tastes that contribute to that escape,” says Moore. “These are all of the things that you miss when watching a film at home.”

The spot breaks down each moment of the experience, she adds, “allowing the viewer to feel that sense of immersion and escape” that comes with a visit to the Cineplex. “I truly believe it will inspire Canadians who’ve missed those moments to come back to the theatre.”

The new platform follows efforts from Cineplex in June of last year that aimed to encourage people to return to the cinema when it looked as though restrictions would be lifting and Canada was exiting the worst of the pandemic. That was not the case as lockdowns and restrictions returned, and the last of its locations reopened this July.

The platform takes a full 360 approach that Moore says will be leveraged for months, possibly years through different treatments and vignettes, as it is built on an enduring insight.

The campaign is launching across digital and social, radio and OOH, as well as appearing on Cineplex’s social channels, interior digital media and exterior banners. The spot will also be a prominent part of the Cineplex pre-show.