You know how some movies are not just classic, but you can watch them over and over? Well imagine watching it and noticing something slightly different, say some product placement?  According to new plans, it may soon be possible to place products digitally into any movie, including the classics.

Product placement has always been a thing in movies, you see people using certain laptops or drinking a popular soda and, in modern movies, we kind of don’t mind, but there seems to be thousands of movies out there which are not doing any advertising and just wasting everyone’s time! The advertising company Mirran think so!

Mirran chief executive Stephan Beringer, says that digital adverting is the way forward, for new and old movies :

“We started out working in movies. Our chief scientist Philip McLauchlan, with his team, came up with the technology that won an Academy Award for the film Black Swan.

The technology can ‘read’ an image, it understands the depth, the motion, the fabric, anything. So you can introduce new images that basically the human eye does not realise has been done after the fact, after the production.”

It’s not just in movies, music videos don’t have enough product placement in them either. Mirran have already used their new technology to put products into singer Giovanny Ayala’s latest music video.

And it gets worse, they are also trying to plan the technology to be able to advertise to YOU, so that the advert in a certain movie/music video, changes depending on who is watching! Like Facebook isn’t stealing enough of our data already.

Film critic, Anne Billson, raised some issues :

“I would be interested in finding out about the legal angle vis-à-vis digital reworking of a copyrighted work, or whether the advertisers would have to buy the film before they tampered with it.

It also calls into question the role of the production designer, who has put a lot of thought into the look of something, only for some random advertiser to come along at a later date and spoil it with changes or additions that might be anachronistic, or that might not mesh with their other carefully considered design choices.”

What are your thoughts? Product placement has always been a thing, right? So does it matter if they do it to old movies? In the mean time, here’s a quick game of Spot the Difference.

Read the full article on the BBC News website.

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