Brewing company debuts its first feature film

Labatt, the brewing company, will premiere its first feature film this Friday in Western Canada.

“The Movie Out Here,” created by Grip Ltd., caps Labatt’s nine-month promotional campaign for Kokanee. The 90-minute feature follows a group of old friends as they reunite in a skiing town. It features numerous cameos, including former NHL player Marty McSorely and—of course—popular endorsers of Kokanee.

Producers from Grip—Labatt’s advertising agency, however, say that the film isn’t about product placement.

“The intent was not to make a 90-minute commercial; no one wants to pay $12 to see that,” said Randy Stein, a creative partner at Grip. “The beer does play a role in the movie, as do the cast of (Kokanee) characters, but they are not the main storyline.”

Stein says that Grip focused on creating an “entertaining buddy comedy that would appeal to our target.”

Labatt’s marketing manager Amy Rawlinson expressed delight and excitement about the role given to the company’s beer product.

“This is taking product placement to the next level: it’s not about how many times the brand is seen, it’s how does this movie represent the brand in terms of the emotive connection?” Rawlinson said.