One of the things I like about George Orwell’s Animal Farm is…what’s that? I promised not to write about it anymore? I did, didn’t I? But I have to, for this morning the interwebs informed me that yesterday would have been Mr Orwell’s eleventy-first birthday. (The reason the interwebs only informed me of it this morning is because the pages I follow which inform me of titbits like this are mostly based in the US and as such are at their most active when I’m snug in bed, thus the belated tribute to ol’ Eric (what Orwell’s mother called him).)
His two best-known novels, Animal Farm and Nineteen Eighty-Four (the latter published only months before his death), both describe totalitarian societies where power is vested in a small minority who uses a combination of intimidation and propaganda to keep the masses in check.
The themes of abuse of power and control through intimidation and propaganda are central to most dystopian fiction, including the Hunger Games trilogy, and the good folks at Lionsgate Entertainment clearly understand that. Consider the newly-released trailer for Mockingjay Part 1 out this November. It’s not your typical teaser trailer filled with random scenes from the film seamlessly thrown together in the editing room. Rather, it’s a presidential address straight out of the Capitol. Give it a look…
Zimbio refers to this as propaganda marketing and has compiled a list of eight films that have used this technique with great success, including the most recent X-men film and the new Transformers film which arrives tomorrow.
I kind of like to think the marketing guys at Lionsgate chose yesterday to release the Mockingjay trailer because it was Orwell’s birthday. That’s probably not the case, but considering that he made it his life’s mission to warn us against the dangers of totalitarianism, I cannot think of a more fitting tribute.
To see all the posts where I’ve managed to somehow drag in Mr Orwell, click the link.