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Expect Plenty More Catherine and Aaron
Thursday, April 19, 2007 | posted by Mike

Hey, did you notice that a bunch of the reviews for the Food Network Awards mentioned the....well...relative lack of "star-power" at the event? That's a bit of an unfair criticism, I think. First, this isn't the Academy Awards or Grammys. Secondly, I think that everyone tuning in knows the difference between "Hollywood Famous" and "Food Network Famous." But I guess that positioning this as an awards gala opens you up to that sort of criticism.

One piece of star wattage that did get mentioned was the presence of actors Catherine Zeta-Jones and Aaron Eckhart. If you smelled "movie promotion," you win a prize! The two will be playing chefs in an upcoming movie called No Reservations. (No relation to Anthony Bourdain's subtitle, I suppose)

But that is just the start of it. According to an article in Variety, you'll be seeing more of them in the lead up to the release of the film this July.

The Food Network has engineered the most elaborate tie-in movie promotion in its 13-year history, helping Warner Bros. to get the word out on "No Reservations," a summer romantic drama starring Catherine Zeta-Jones and Aaron Eckhart as gourmet chefs.

"Our strategy is to find partners who'll get us involved in movies that dial into the pop culture," said Susie Fogelson, VP of marketing for Food Network.

The plan is to carve out a whole night of primetime on July 26 to create shows linked to "No Reservations" during the first week of its release in U.S. theaters.

The kickoff show for the night, "Emeril," will feature as guests Eckhart and Abigail Breslin, who plays the niece of Zeta-Jones; the two will join Emeril as he prepares food derived from some of the recipes used in the movie. "Emeril" will lead in to a special edition of Food's "Unwrapped" series, hosted by Marc Summers, which will go behind the scenes of the movie.

Throughout the July 26 primetime schedule, Food net will include interstitial features with Zeta-Jones and Eckhart.

So, expect promos...lots and lots of promos.



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