‘How to Train Your Dragon 3’ Proves How to Finish a Trilogy

While not exactly a golden rule, it is known fact that if a movie does well in the box office, chances are good that it will be followed by sequel and more often than not, we’ve come to expect that the sequel won’t measure up to the original. Add a third movie to the mix and you’re just asking for trouble. With animated movies, the expectations are often even lower. (Is anyone really surprised that the Ice Age movies keep getting worse?) But sometimes, as is the case with the Disney/Pixar Toy Story movies, we’re pleasantly surprised. Now you can add How to Train Your Dragon to that short list too.

One thing that DreamWorks Animation has understood about this series is that the story comes first, the hijinks come later. The very first Dragon movie proved that way back in 2010 with a strong story and with each chapter that has come after it, that story just keeps getting better. What started out as a cute kid’s story has become a powerful trilogy. We've seen these chara…

NBC/Universal Promotion of ‘Jurassic World’ Sequel Won’t Let Up

Amazon delivers a dino-sized package
(Universal Studios)


These days, TV shows are frequently being used to promote events, other unrelated shows and movies during their broadcasts. The networks try really hard to make the cross-promotions seem as natural as possible when the two clearly don’t mesh.

During the broadcast of this year’s Winter Olympics on NBC, Disney found a way to give "sneak peeks" of the upcoming Incredibles 2. During the recent Survivor finale, the special took time away from interviewing the contestants about their experiences on the island to tease about Kevin Hart’s new summer game show, Total Knock Out. And now, NBC and Universal are going full throttle in promoting the upcoming summer blockbuster, Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom with similar tricks.

Bryce Dallas Howard and Chris Pratt
Bryce Dallas Howard and Chris Pratt (Universal Studios)
First of all, if you watched NBC’s presentation of the first movie last night, you are probably still in shock and awe over how much time was dedicated to just commercials. The commercial breaks were slightly shorter than the actual movie segments stretching the two hour and four minute film into a three-hour spectacle. Many of the commercial breaks promoted the upcoming sequel.

One of the commercials that showed up frequently throughout the broadcast was for a special “Jurassic World Night” to be shown during this Wednesday’s American Ninja Warrior. "American Ninja Warrior welcomes special guests to the Los Angeles qualifier when dinosaurs from Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom invade the course, along with a special appearance by the film's stars, Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard,” states the NBC press release. If you don’t normally watch ANW, don’t alter your routine for this. While it sounds exciting, chances are good that the course will feature a few dinosaurs here and there looking menacing, but they probably won't be doing much while the Pratt and Howard observe the show while sitting with the audience. Expect to see yet another trailer for the sequel that gives way too much away.

American Ninja Warrior
(Tyler Golden/NBC)
This isn’t the first time that American Ninja Warrior has been used to promote Universal movies. Last summer the show promoted Descpicable Me 3 with costumed Minions cheering on the contestants.

In another stunt, Universal Pictures partnered with Amazon to deliver the largest “delivery” in Amazon’s history to The Grove in Los Angeles last week to promote advance tickets for the dino flick. The 40’ L x 14’9” H x 14’ mystery box, complete with air holes and delivered by a Jeep Wrangler motorcade, contained a Jurassic-sized surprise. Of course, Howard and Pratt were there as well.

Fans can follow the mystery on social with #amazonfindsaway, as well as get tickets to Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom. “From now until the big reveal, Fallen Kingdom fans can get clues to the mystery inside the giant package when they ask any Alexa-enabled device: "Alexa, ask Jurassic World what's inside the box," says NBC. Alexa will supposedly connect you with someone who can give more information on the source of all the noise. On June 22, players can return to play an interactive audio experience, in the Jurassic World Revealed for Amazon Alexa, from Universal and Earplay.”


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