Swedish intimate apparel and pleasure brand LELO, a unit of Stockholm-based LELO Group has entered the movie business. The company, the top brand of intimate lifestyle products, has made “Beyond The Wave” starring Casper Van Dien (Starship Troopers and Sleepy Hollow). The company, which makes and sells pleasure objects, bedroom accessories, intimate apparel and massage candles and oils, touts the film as a first-ever mainstream movie produced by a company in the pleasure products category. But the movie is a futuristic, dystopian love story. So, no product placement.
The company says that since it was released last week, the trailer for the movie has gotten over a million views. This week the company launched a PlayTogether platform for watching elements of the film. Designed by the company, and available for download at a dedicated site, it can only be watched with two cell phones whose screens are adjacent. You are meant to watch with a partner. The site has sections about LELO products as well as behind-the-scenes “making of” type content and interviews.
Steve Thomson, head of marketing at the company, tells Marketing Daily that the movie itself won't be interactive in the same way that the PlayTogether trailer experience is, “which gives glimpses into the deeper world of Beyond the Wave. In that, you navigate through the character's world, seeing snippets of the larger movie and learning more about their various journeys. The movie will be slightly more conventional.”
Thomson says the movie, a kind of “Love in the Ruins,” but with more love and probably more ruins, was developed internally by LELO's creative teams, “Until we reached a point where we knew we had some exciting ideas, at which point we began to engage agencies and external teams to help us make the ideas a reality,” he says. “While we had the creativity within the team here, we don't have — for example — any directorial experience.” For that, LELO hired Croatian director Goran Gajic to helm.
Thomson says that although there is no product placement, there is a kind of connection between the Wave massagers the company makes and the “Beyond the Wave” movie, since they were in development at the same time, “So the same mentality and ethos went into both of them. We felt we needed to remind people that there is more to sex than sex, that true pleasure comes from sharing intimacy. That's good for everyone — including LELO. So everyone wins."
The movie will come out this summer. “Obviously, the distribution channels for movies have undergone a huge change in the past few years, and we are eager to reach as wide an audience as possible,” says Thomson. “So we do have plans for the release.” He says since it's a global project, the film will be available with subtitles for different languages. He says it won’t run longer than an hour. “We are currently considering options on festival submission, and extending the project depending on the response from the audience. It is the first time LELO has a movie, so we are watching reactions and moving forward from there.”