Here's looking at you: OLN's guide to marketing a movie night in
In 2013 70% of TV sets sold in the UK were classified as big – 26in-32in – and nearly 16% were were “jumbo” – 43in or bigger. This is up 4% from the year before, according to TV Licensing’s annual Telescope report on the nation’s viewing habits.
An earlier report found that 8% of Brits expect to have a dedicated cinema room in their homes by 2020.
With staying in firmly established as the new going out, and consumers abandoning FOMO, the fear of missing out, in favour of JOMO, the joy of missing out, there’s never been a better time to cash in on the sales opportunity offered by big nights in, and this year OLN is looking at how to host and sell the perfect movie night.
As more and more traditional video and DVD rental shops have gone out of business in the face of competition from postal and on- demand services such as Amazon Prime and Netflix – giant Blockbuster went into administration late last year – some off-licences have stepped into the gap, offering customers DVDs for rent or sale.
Automated video kiosks such as those offered by Original Video (original-video.com) have taken off in the US, where they first launched in 2002 and where there are now more than 30,000 units in operation. The model is simple, with new release movies offered for a small hire charge and, according to Original Video, they can make up to £500 a week.
Even if you don’t offer DVDs yourself, this is a great time of year to inspire customers to make a big night in of their film evening with an innovative aisle-end or window display – and don’t forget to lay out the snacks, as nibbles such as popcorn, crisps and sweets are a key ingredient.
To get you started, we’ve lined up some classic film choices – and suggestions to drink with them.
■ Casablanca: Humphrey Bogart’s Rick is a self-confessed drunkard, and in the course of the film plenty of wine, bourbon, brandy and Cognac is consumed. But when you watch Casablanca, why not have a Champagne toast along with Rick and his lover, Ilsa, played by Ingrid Bergman. They’ll always have Paris.
■ Shaun of the Dead: Simon Pegg and Edgar Wright’s Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz and The World’s End may be more associated with Cornettos than alcohol, but they’re all about beer and pubs. We recommend lager with Shaun of the Dead and bitter with The World’s End, with a cranberry juice in between for Hot Fuzz’s abstemious hero, Nick Angel.
■ The Big Lebowski: The Dude is a big fan of White Russians – vodka, Kahlúa and “half-and-half ” milk – which he often refers to as “caucasians”.
■ Casino Royale: It’s no secret that 007 likes a vodka Martini, shaken not stirred – but in this 2006 film Bond invents the Vesper, a blend of gin, vodka and Kina Lillet, which sparked a sales boom for the French aperitif.
■ Withnail & I: “We want the finest wines available to humanity. And we want them here, and we want them now.” How about some first-growth Bordeaux, a little Penfold’s Grange or a Super Tuscan? It’ll taste even better if you’re comparing it to the lighter fuel Withnail is drinking.
■ Sideways: Drink Pinot Noir. Not Merlot.
■ In Bruges: One for the Belgian beers – Duvel, Chimay, Timmermans.
■ Local Hero: Perfect for a wee dram of Scotch.
■ Before Sunrise: Watch the nighttime streets of Vienna with one of Austria’s gorgeous Grüner Veltliners in your grasp. The same recommendation goes for The Sound of Music. And The Third Man.
■ Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy: Ron Burgundy Great Odin’s Raven Special Reserve whisky, of course. Or Burgundy.
■ Lost in Translation: Get out the sake and Japanese whiskey.
■ It’s a Wonderful Life: How about a Baileys over ice, in honour of James Stewart’s hero George Bailey.
■ The Godfather: Drink to the Corleone family’s Italian heritage with a Sicilian Nero d’Avola, or a Grillo if you prefer white wine.
■ The Dark Knight: There’s a Dark Knight cocktail that blends gin, blue curaçao, sweet and sour mix, grenadine and cranberry juice.
■ Raiders of the Lost Ark: Indiana Jones’s love interest, Marion Ravenwood, wins a drinking contest. Drink a bourbon or American whiskey as you cheer her on.
■ Moulin Rouge: Imagine yourself in a tubercular artist’s garret in 19th- century Paris and enjoy an absinthe with Baz Luhrmann’s musical – but don’t expect Kylie Minogue to appear and start singing the Sound of Music to you afterwards.
We asked the Twittersphere for their best booze-drenched films, and what they would drink with them
“Pretty much any western film makes us want to drink whisky shots.” Majestic Bicester, @majesticbic
“Watched Withnail & I with a bottle of Le Mesnil 04 a while back … by myself.” Matt Walls @mattwallswine
“Who doesn’t enjoy watching Sideways with a nice glass or two of Merlot?” VirginWines, @VirginWines
“The Big Lebowski, while drinking Brandy Alexanders.” Le Sundrench, @nigemcadam
“Withnail & I, with a whisky. All day, every day.” Aaron Eastwood, @ajeastwood
“The Angels’ Share with a large dram of course.” Matt Silver, @MattSilverPR
“Leaving Las Vegas, and Guinness.” Terry Collmann, @TerryCollmann
“Not as obvious, nor as drenched as Withnail, but how about The Philadelphia Story for booze & schmooze? I believe Pommery 1926 was the tipple of choice in the film.” Simon Woods, @woodswine
"Casino Royale and a Vesper?" Joseph Arthur, @jarthur09
"Well being a lover of both Californian wines & #SAABs I'd have to say #Sideways, with a big glass of #Merlot, of course! Teehee." Adnams Harleston, @AdnamsHarleston