geisha.jpgRemember that whole Medium/Memoirs of a Geishaproduct placement brouhaha from earlier in the week? People are still talking about it. Yesterday, The Movie Blog went into a few of the details of the deal, which was particularly notable for the fact that a Sony movie was being promoted on a Paramount program airing on a Universal network. Geof Ammer, Sony's marketing president, reportedly said, "We are watching the erosion of commercial watching due to DVRs and TiVos, so we're trying our best to get out there...We don't own a network, so there are promotional ways that we do it."

Those Movie Bloggers seem to be generally okay with it, but most of our commenters were not. "I was appalled at the shameless Geisha product placement," Trudy Kuehner writes. "First, it took me a minute to get that we'd gone from the show to the commercial; I was ashamed and annoyed when I belatedly got it...It makes Amazon look great, that at least they'll say "We think people interested in X are also interested in Y" (which sometimes yields inscrutable results). Medium didn't bother to say why they thought Geisha was right for its viewers."

But L'Emmerdeur, in a manifesto-length comment, explains why such product placement is a sign of future developments that will actually be good for viewers. "Over the next decade, networks will die, and the first skirmishes are being fought over who the distributors of content will be. Your cable company, iTunes/Rhapsod/etc., telcos, everyone sees the writing on the wall, and wants a piece of this future pie...You [will] get more content, and more content variety, content targeted to specific audiences ... And you get fewer Farscape/Dead Like Me/Arrested Development heartbreaks, because many such shows become economically viable in such an environment."

So ... who's right?

categories Movies, Cinematical