Big Apple Is 'Where The Wild Things Are'

ONIC Where the Wild Things Are

The City of New York's marketing organization, NYC & Company, is getting behind Warner Brother's "Where the Wild Things Are," which opens on Friday. The organization says the deal is the largest since the city's first such promotion around 2007's Sony Pictures release "Spiderman 3."

The group is running a "Wild Things Week" this week, prior to Friday's opening, with cultural, educational and entertainment events, exhibits, celebrity appearances and festivities. Maurice Sendak, the book's author, was born and raised in Brooklyn.

Elements include a street renaming, library readings in the five boroughs, a "Wild Things" recreational program in a number of city parks, and Sendak art shows at major museums.



Karen Sortito -- the former head of promotions for MGM, Fox and Paramount, who joined NYC & Company as SVP and general manager earlier this year after consulting for the organization -- tells Marketing Daily that NYC & Company is now "in constant dialogue with the entertainment business. Movie studios and television are just as important to us." She points out that NYC & Company's efforts are not to be confused with the city's office of film and TV, which promotes New York as a production location. "We are about the final product, whether it has roots here or not," she says.

Wild Things Poster "I think the beauty of these deals is -- we are truly great navigators of the city's assets, so when a film comes along that has all the great qualities this one does, we can activate for all members [of NYC & Company]. She said several city parks and more than 75 member businesses are involved.

The city this week named Greenwich Avenue and 8th Street in Greenwich Village "Wild Things Way" and "Maurice Sendak Way." Kodak has photo booths at the New York Public Library and the Official New York Information Center, where kids can have their pictures superimposed with the movie's characters.

Some of the film's cast members such as Forest Whitaker, Catherine Keener and the movie's star, Max Records (who plays Max), are doing readings at the New York Public Library. NYC & Company member restaurants, hotels and retailers, offering themed packages and activity booklets for kids. Director Spike Jonze and Sendak are also making appearances in the city.

 The campaign includes social-media elements about Wild Things Week on Twitter and Facebook, and at the NYC & Company Web site ( about the book and the film. Promotions driven by Warner Brothers nationally include Urban Outfitters, which is selling "Where the Wild Things Are" apparel; and Ugg, which is offering "Where the Wild Things Are" footwear. Ben & Jerry's and Borders Books are also doing national programs.

The film premiered at Alice Tully Hall Tuesday and the after-party was at the Museum of Modern Art, which are both NYC & Company members. The latter is running a retrospective of Jonze's work called "Spike Jonze: The First 80 Years."

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