How did Slumdog get its Millionaire? ~ Brand Mix

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

How did Slumdog get its Millionaire?

Photo: Shabbir Siraj (Flickr)

Great movie (see Ebert's review here) but I couldn't help but wonder afterwards how on earth the producers of "Who Wants to be a Millionaire" ever gave permission for the quiz show to be used. Without giving away the details, the movie portrays the show pretty badly, connecting it with torture, collusion and cheating. Not your typical product placement.

Luckily, I wasn't the first to wonder that and I found this article by Aaron Barnhart of the Miami Herald. He has done some digging and reports that Celador, one of the production companies behind the film, is also the company that created "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire." It sold the international rights in 2005 and used the proceeds to focus on the movie business, including this movie which (I think) undercuts the show. Nice.

But maybe it's all going to work out. Josef Adalian, writing in TV Week, says that ABC is considering bringing the show back to primetime. He thinks that the “Slumdog Millionaire” connection is a positive since it puts Millionaire "very much back in the cultural zeitgeist." It certainly does that and perhaps that's the most important thing? Contestants better be on their toes, though, if they answer too many questions correctly.


Fritinancy said...

The link you provided for Ebert's review leads to an AP story about the rights to "Millionaire." (Great movie, and good topic for your post! And BTW, my captcha word is "bribe.")

stephen byrne said...

Martin..the producers included the people who developed Who Wants a Millionaire. It's a long long product placement. They approached Danny Boyle with the script.

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