Movie tie-in connects hit bird-slingshotting game to upcoming animated film starring voice of Jesse Eisenberg.
By Adam Rosenberg
Fox aired a 30-second spot for its forthcoming animated family comedy "Rio" during the fourth quarter of a tense showdown between the Green Bay Packers and Pittsburgh Steelers at Super Bowl XLV. In an advertising first, the trailer contained an embedded code for an unlockable level in the top-selling Apple App Store game "Angry Birds."
The level connects to a larger contest that offers participants the opportunity to win a trip to Rio de Janeiro in Brazil for the film's March 22 premiere. Also out in March is "Angry Birds Rio," a movie tie-in that brings developer Rovio Mobile's hit bird-slingshotting game to the characters and locales of the Fox film.
"Rio" is the work of "Ice Age" director Carlos Saldanha and "Big Momma's House" writer Don Rhymer. "The Social Network" star and Oscar nominee Jesse Eisenberg lends his voice to the lead bird role of Blu, a rare species of macaw living in Minnesota who is sent off on a high-flying adventure to Rio de Janeiro where he is meant to find fellow macaw Jewel (Anne Hathaway) and ... ahem ... repopulate the species.
Things don't quite prove to be that simple however, with everything from poachers to Blu's pesky fear of flying getting in the way. Blu encounters a range of colorful characters on his journey, voiced by the likes of George Lopez, Jemaine Clement, Leslie Mann, Tracy Morgan, Will.i.am, Jamie Fox and Jane Lynch, among others.
The trailer features Blu flapping his way through a series of wacky situations, all of them involving a multicolored rainbow of tropical birds. "Rio" hits theaters on April 15, an American/Brazilian production from 20th Century Fox and Blue Sky Studios.
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