Branded Entertainment: Can Intel Recapture ‘Inside Films’ Magic?

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Dell Intel What Lives Inside short film branded entertainment 2015

A decade and a half. That’s how long it’s been since the “Dell Dude” Christmas commercial that launched a brief era of Dell market dominance in consumer computing.

That ad, like many more (increasingly annoying) ones after it, closed with Intel’s iconic five-note mnemonic chime that mimicked “Intel Inside.”

Now Intel is reteaming with Dell, the replacement for its former “Inside Films” series partner (Toshiba) as it’s getting the band back together on a landmark branded entertainment collaborative entertainment project. [more]

Picking up where the Intel/Toshiba “Inside Films” partnership left off in 2013, the 2015 Dell-Intel social film collaboration is titled What Lives Inside.

This time around, the “social film” component involves crowdsourcing characters in the film, with the public invited to create and submit sketches for creatures that will be featured in the movie. Budding artists can submit their ideas at the project’s website.

The effort is no low-budget, Hollywood back-lot pulp.

Like Intel’s previous “Inside Films” projects, What Lives Inside stars an outstanding cast: 2015 Golden Globe winner J.K. Simmons, Colin Hanks (from 2015 Golden Globe-winning Fargo) and Emmy-winning actress and comedian Catherine O’Hara.

Two-time Oscar-winning Robert Stromberg (art direction; Alice in Wonderland, Avatar) is directing, following up on his work on Disney’s Maleficent.

The final film will debut on Hulu on March 25 and what little we know about the plot comes from a press release: The story will revolve around a men who “discovers a mysterious world of his dad’s creation and finds himself on an adventure that will soon unlock his own creativity.”

Intel Dell What Lives Inside film project

Of course, the “world’s thinnest tablet” (Dell’s new Venue 8 7000 with Intel RealSense) will play “a critical character in the film,” a brandcameo that will see the tablet accompany our hero “on every step of the journey… helping to unlock his creativity.”

Intel Dell What Lives Inside

To project has a high bar to meet, given Intel and Toshiba’s award-winning three-year collaboration that launched “Inside Films.”

In 2013, the last year of their partnership, The Power Inside was a six-part film series starring Harvey Keitel:

The Beauty Inside six-part web series (2012) took home some major hardware (three Grand Prix awards) in the cyber, film and branded entertainment categories at the Cannes Lions awards in addition to winning a Daytime Emmy:

A year earlier, the “Inside Films” platform launched with The Inside Experience, an interactive “social horror film” project starring Emmy Rossum.

The innovative 11-day real-time social experiment saw Rossum’s character interacting with the public on social media via fake Twitter and Facebook pages.

A year after Dell and Intel unleashed the Dell Dude on an unsuspecting world, by the way, branded entertainment won more credibility when BMW launched BMW Films, a web-based, truly revolutionary step forward for branded entertainment that put A-list Hollywood together with a brand.

Since then, brands from Jaguar to Louis Vuitton have jumped on the branded entertainment train—almost literally in the case of the latter.

Now the question remains for Intel—can it go back inside its own success and recreate the magic with Dell that made its Toshiba collaboration so groundbreaking?

Below, “Inside Films” agency Pereira O’Dell summarizes the “Inside Film” projects in a series of video case studies:

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