Amid trying to get performers lined up and into costume, she could hear the crowd gathering in the next room. “They get here early to get seats,” McGrath said of the audience. “And every year, we have so many great and talented performers.” This is the second year in a row that the YMCA has hosted the Snappy Senior Fun Follies Show, a mini Broadway production. And it’s grown from just an idea into a big undertaking. Performers ranged in age from 60 to 90, and the range of talent was just as wide some sang, some danced and others told jokes. The crowd of more than 300 was well entertained during the two-hour show. McGrath opened the show with her rendition of “There’s No Business Like Show Business.” The show also honored America with several patriotic numbers and the presentation of colors, and military veterans were recognized. Other acts including Hollywood’s own Jersey Boys singing “Sherry” and the Sexy Seniors’ performance of “Rock Around the Mop.” Ricardo Ribeiro brought the audience to its feet with his performance of “Climb Every Mountain.” Two years ago, McGrath approached the YMCA’s executive director, Rhonda Ludwig, about putting together a show of senior talent. McGrath, who has more than 10 years experience in the entertainment industry, wanted to get her fellow seniors involved in singing and dancing. “It’s just my desire to show the world that there are still seniors that have talent and want to show it off,” she said. “We find more and more talent each year. It’s such a wonderful experience.” Ludwig said, “I thought this would be something that included like 10 or 15 people, and we could have it on the pool deck.” But like last year’s inaugural show, Ludwig and other YMCA staffers found themselves scrambling to find chairs and enough seats for the guests. “This is a big deal for everyone here in Hollywood,” she said. Proceeds from the show’s ticket sales will benefit the YMCA’s financial assistance programs.
Billionaire Wang Jianlin Aims to Build China’s Hollywood
Other planned facilities include a theme park akin to Orlandos Universal Studios, celebrity wax museum, yacht center, and bars and restaurants. When completed, the project will transform Qingdao into a city of global film and television cultural tourism, Wang said in a statement. According to the Wall Street Journal, he is also planning to build a Hollywood-esque sign on a nearby hillside. Wang said in a statement that his aim is for at least a hundred films a year to be shot at the studio complex, including some 30 foreign films. That might sound ambitious, but the star-studded Sunday ceremony did attract Harvey Weinstein of the Weinstein Co. as well executives from Warner Bros. ( TWX ), Viacom ( VIA ), Paramount Pictures ( VIA ), and Lions Gate Entertainment ( LGF ). Its not clear if any deals have been inked between foreign studios and Dalian Wanda Group. Separately, Dalian Wanda Group last week announced a $20 million donation to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences to build a film museum in Los Angeles.Beginning in 2016, the Academy will advise Wangs company on hosting an annual fall film festival in Qingdao. These hefty investments come at a time when the U.S. film industry is in anxious flux.
Obama looks to Hollywood to help promote his healthcare law
Wedged into the blotter on Mike Farah’s desk at the Funny or Die studios in Hollywood is an index card with a list wrangling talent, polishing scripts and arranging shoots long enough to keep the comedy website executive fully occupied. But these tasks are part of a different quest: the campaign to ensure the success of President Obama ‘s healthcare law . While the GOP -led House passed a spending bill Friday that would strip federal funding for the Affordable Care Act and force a confrontation with the Senate that could shut down the government, Farah and his team were developing as many as 20 projects involving the healthcare law. The first will go live on Sept. 30, the day before Americans are supposed to be able to enroll in the new health insurance marketplaces. Efforts of allies like Farah in Hollywood which could be key in reaching the critical enrollment target of 18-to-35-year-olds are just one small piece of a broad-reaching campaign by the Obama administration and the consortium of industry and nonprofit groups working to get at least 7 million Americans enrolled in the next six months. Farah’s drive stems from a series of White House meetings, culminating in a July session in the Roosevelt Room in which the president asked for help promoting the law from a conference table full of artists, entertainers and creative executives including Farah, Amy Poehler , Jason Derulo, Michael Cera and Jennifer Hudson. Farah, Funny or Die’s president of production, was shocked by the challenges facing the White House. “The simplest way to put it was, they had spent all this time and energy and money on the biggest movie of their lives and had no marketing budget in which to promote it. I just thought that was the craziest thing I’d ever heard,” Farah said. He volunteered the firm’s help, he said, because he knew “we’d do the work.” They are playing on a cluttered field.
Sound familiar? It is pretty similar to anything and everything a great brand and its marketers have ever hoped for and worked for. So how come Hollywood gets it? How do Hollywood directors and producers know how to evoke nearly the same, and I mean the same, feelings in people with certain hit films, when global brands are struggling to motivate and evoke emotions in consumers on a global scale? Thankfully, there are numerous exceptions of brands that are able to touch and truly interact with a global audience, winning their hearts and brains over. But, in principle, I still believe there is a lot to learn from Hollywood, from storytelling to character building. When Im looking at TV and movie characters who have outlived their original context, making new lives across several fashion, lifestyle and consumer goods categories (with sometimes even greater success), I cannot help but wonder why advertisers remain more reluctant. Yes, reluctant. Besides certain mind-blowing, provocative masterpieces that advertising produces, ad campaigns fall way behind the sustainable success of Hollywood feature films. One key factor of successful content marketing, besides storytelling, is making the content shareable. In this way, story production does not rely on the brand itself but on the audience who will passionately promote content relevant to personal contexts, helping to overcome the first barrier. So, before you jump into content production, set your strategy, boost the user experience, and you will be able to immerse your audience. They will prove you wrong, swiftly destroying your worries about losing control. Their authentic voice will deepen brand engagement in the long term. In addition to that, internal crowd sourcing using the voice and vision of employees will help create relevant content.