Austenland is movie about a Jane Austen amusement park of sorts where women go to escape modern life. Their marketing campaign, perhaps unsurprisingly, is entirely focused on women.
In what may seem an obvious move, Sony is only focusing their Austenland marketing efforts solely on women. Female only screenings, specialty wall calendars sent to female reviewers, and even high teas being hosted by actress Jane Seymour, one of the stars of the film, are among their many plans.
In speaking with The Hollywood Reporter, Sony Pictures Classics co-president Tom Bernard, clarifies their tactics.
It’s not like we’re going to have guards at the door throwing men out, but I think everyone will get the message based on the invitations. At Sundance, women loved the movie, but we found that the few reviews that we did get from male critics were vicious. We just said, ‘Fine, it’s not for you. Don’t see it. Can’t come.
The official website just opened. It looks a bit like a board game once you click “enter site”. Readers can explore the basics of the world. Other areas featuring wining and dining and mini-vacations are still under development.
The film is the first from Stephenie Meyer’s production company which has also acquired the sequel, Midnight in Austenland. Both films are based upon the Shannon Hale novels of the same title.
Stephenie Meyer commented to THR
This film is very uniquely female. There can’t be many movies in the marketplace that are based on a novel by a woman, scripted by women, produced by women, directed by a woman and starring a woman. There are beginning to be more female-centric, female-created movies in the marketplace, but they’re still vastly the minority.
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The film opens in New York City and Los Angeles on August 16, and it goes into wider distribution at a yet unannounced date.