A long list of sponsors has signed on to support Universal Pictures and director Peter Berg’s vision of the modern military movie. Battleship is getting $50 million in promotional partnerships starting with Coke Zero, whose new Berg-helmed commercial debuted this past weekend during the NCAA basketball tournament broadcasts.
Keep your eyes open between now and the May 18th release because the Battleship commercials are coming fast and furious. Nestlé is plastering the movie on Butterfinger, Crunch and Baby Ruth bars, while Nabisco is slapping the logo on its Wheat Thins, Triscuit, Ritz Bitz, Chips Ahoy, Swedish Fish and Sour Patch Kids boxes. Subway’s doing the fast food promo and Hilton Hotels are running a Battleship contest for their guests.
To top it off, the Navy is running ads in movie theaters that will emphasize the “real men and women of the Navy” and the USO has announced a series of PSAs that will highlight the “real heroes” that serve in the U.S. military.
Look, we get that Universal and Hasbro (makers of the game and producers of the movie) have spent time and money promoting efforts to help men and women who actually serve. Maybe that’s because they’re just a little self-conscious about their decision to take one of the greatest board games ever and turn it into something that looks like a Transformers sequel. But coming hot on the heels of Act of Valor, one of the most realistic military movies ever, Battleship can’t help but look a little silly.
Maybe the finished project will be awesome. Maybe it won’t matter that Battleship features Taylor Kitsch, who is fresh off one of the biggest flop movies of all time with John Carter. Maybe Rihanna will surprise everyone with her previously unimagined acting skills. Maybe Liam Neeson doesn’t get killed off in the first 20 minutes like the trailer suggests.
Anyway, we’re providing this post as a service. If you want to support Battleship, make some extra stops at Subway and stock up on Triscuits and Coke Zero the next time you’re at the market. If the whole thing just makes you nervous, maybe it’s time to switch to Cheez-Its and Pepsi.