The career of Victor Salva has continued to take unprecedented turns. The director came back from what seemed like assured career annihilation after he pled guilty to having oral sex with a 12 year old boy – and taping it! I have a feeling you’d have a tough time getting your job at TGI Fridays back when you came out of prison for that one, but Salva was able to return to the directing game, making Powder and the CHUD-championed Jeepers Creepers, which actually did pretty well. The sequel, not so much. He followed that up with The Peaceful Warrior, a movie that I thought went direct to video, but it turns out that it just tanked like mad in limited release last summer. After that it seemed like ticket sales would do to Salva what raping a 12 year couldn’t… until today.
It turns out that the film’s producers think The Peaceful Warrior can find an audience. If they give the movie away, that is. They’ve bought 15 million dollars in tickets and will be giving them away to people in conjunction with Best Buy. It’s an unprecedented – and sort of bizarre – way to resurrect and market a movie that already came and went. First of all, they’re spending more on the tickets than they spent on making the movie. And second of all, it’s a really shitty that nobody wanted to see the first time.
The thought, though, is that the people who go for free will like it and tell their friends, who will pay to go. And then everybody will buy the DVD, which may have a commentary with Salva drooling over his lead (yet again Victor Salva makes a movie about a nubile young man!). Will this work? I’m kind of fascinated to see what happens with this utterly unique method of marketing. I do hope it fucking tanks again, though. In fact, I hope nobody even takes the free tickets – now that would be guffaw-worthy.