In the world of sponsorships and movies, one movie takes a dark-humor approach to sponsorship. Zombieland, a 2009 zombie comedy film has clear evidence of sponsorships throughout the film. Many films may disguise or indirectly sponsor certain brands, people, and products, however, the characters in Zombieland are clearly giving a kudos to Hostess, Ghost Busters, and actor Bill Murray.
Hostess is clearly advertised throughout the entire movie, as the main character, Tallahassee, is on a constant search for Twinkies. Everywhere and anywhere he travels, he is looking for Twinkies. It’s clear he is looking for Twinkies because he directly states in grocery stores, on the road, and at the carnival the he is on the hunt for some Twinkies. The movie uses a dark humor on the importance of Twinkies for Tallahassee. One scene shows the main characters pulling over at a grocery store. Tallahassee explains his reason for stopping is because the last box of Twinkies may be in the grocery store. This scene explains how terribly in love Tallahassee is with Twinkies. He is willing to go into a grocery store, during a zombie apocalypse, all for a box of Twinkies. The Twinkies are so important he is willing to risk his life at any time just to get one of these treats.
Hostess is continually advertised through the movie, and one scene in particular actually shows the Hostess logo on a Hostess delivery truck. Tallahassee and company are driving on the road and spot a crashed Hostess truck. Tallahassee quickly parks and is ready to explore the truck in hope of it being filled with Twinkies. To his dismay it is filled with snowballs, which is another Hostess snack. He doesn't like snowballs but doesn't regard them as awful treats. Our other character Columbus likes the snowballs and makes good comments on them.
Both scenes are a win-win for the movie and Hostess. The characters clearly like the Hostess treats and are willing to risk their lives to obtain these treats during a zombie apocalypse- yes it is that serious. Lunsford and Ruszkiewicz explore how a rhetorical analysis such as with Zombieland and hostess work. The two provide positive feedback to each other. Viewers can relate to a real world item, and be reminded of the deliciousness of Hostess treats. In return, Hostess may receive more sales of their desserts following the viewing of the film. The constant reminder of Twinkies just makes you want to go get one and munch it out in respects for Tallahassee.
Another interesting advertisement during the film is that of Bill Murray. Tallahassee chooses Murray’s house out of all homes that are vacant during a zombie apocalypse, to rest at. “Bill (Bleeping) Murray!” as Tallahassee refers to him. This advertisement is an interesting one as Tallahassee constantly praises Murray, and then Murray appears in the film. Tallahassee uses dark humor to show how important of an icon Murray is to older generations when he tells the little girl he’s never hit a kid before. This sort of joke refers to the little girl not knowing who Bill Murray is and Tallahassee takes it as an insult, almost enough to want to hit the girl. He then goes on to compare Bill Murray to an important figure, Gandhi, which the little girl doesn't know either. This scene can be interpreted many ways. To me it shows the older generations know of important figures and compare their own favorite people to these prominent characters. The little girl represents a younger generation that doesn't have the same respect for what the older like or may not even know they exist.
The film incorporates many sponsorship’s from start to end. In this case I think the sponsorship's add to the humor of the movie. I think both the products and the movie complement each other on win-win bases.