Posted by Abe Sauer on December 17, 2010 11:00 AM
The Transporter film series is about to get the TV treatment. Deadline reports that a mystery "major" US broadcaster is on board for a 12-part series costing $48 million series based on the trilogy. The question is, who will star? And we don't mean who will enlace original star Jason Statham, but if Audi will remain the Transporter's ride.
In recent years Audi has made a huge product placement push in numerous high-profile movies, from teenybopper films like 17 Again to slightly less teenybopper films like the Iron Man franchise.
But one of Audi's first huge onscreen adult roles was in the The Transporter film series.
It says something about Audi's involvement that everyone now associates The Transporter series with Audi, even though BMW was the original Transporter car. Audi only appeared in the sequels, even finding its emblem on the posters. The match was so fluid that the film's star, Jason Statham, starred in an actual Audi commercial, a mind-bending pairing that redefined the film-ad relationship:
While it is notoriously difficult to measure the effectiveness of product placement, it's a safe assumption that Audi's increased onscreen exposure in films like the Transporter series has translated to an overall increase in brand awareness and, more importantly, a likely increase in positive associations with Audi as a "premium" brand. Indeed, on Monday, Dec. 14, Audi broke its US market annual vehicle sales record, notching its 93,507th transaction of 2010.
The auto's role in the series certainly has its fans (below). Then again, maybe Audi is ready to hand the over the series to the next automaker, and instead focus on new avenues for placement and branded entertainment.
We reached out to Audi's new product placement agency, Iconic Entertainment, to find out if Audi will continue its partnership with the series, and will add their thoughts if they wish to comment.