Film director Brett Ratner is doing his part to blur the line between commercialism and cinematography.
"Filmmakers should align themselves with brands," says Ratner, 40. "They can help each other."
Ratner recently collaborated with Kerzner International, a global casino chain and owner of the Atlantis Resort in the Bahamas.
CEO Sol Kerzner wanted to rejuvenate his brand and thought the director, known for his Guitar Hero commercials and blockbuster movies, could help.
Ratner, who directed X-Men: The Last Stand, will include the Bermuda vacation destination in an episode of “Lost Weekend,” a show he recently sold to the CW network.
"The effects do serve the strategy of communicating a fun, tropical, family, destination, but other than that -- big deal," says Bob Garfield, advertising critic at Advertising Age.
For many film and TV viewers, product placements represent the unholiest of marriages. However, the sobering realities of a struggling global economy and strained money streams for movie and television producers is shaking perceptions of product placements as people become acclimated to the relative evils of survival -- for brands and artists alike -- during tough economic times.
Product placements give directors an added boost of marketing money, and with so many studios cutting back on costs, Ratner envisions more director-corporation collaborations in the future. Says Ratner about the alliance with Kerzner International: "As long as it gets people to book hotel rooms, I'm happy." That would make Sol happy, too, of course.
More brands are coming to Ratner for help. Revlon hopes that he will rejuvenate Mitchum deodorant, and Activision hired Ratner to produce a new series of Guitar Hero commercials. Once on board, Brett Ratner brings valuable advice, A-list contacts, and advertising ideas.
Ratner isn't shy about integrating a brand into current projects, either. For example, when filming a music video for Miley Cyrus, Ratner persuaded the singer to rock out on Guitar Hero and promptly put the clip online where it was seen across the world.