Doner, Circuit City Go to the Movies

CHICAGO Looking to court film fans this holiday season, Circuit City has partnered with Regal Entertainment Group’s movie theaters to get its message out to the popcorn set.

Onscreen ads will feature an animated Santa Claus dancing to the Cars song, “Just What I Needed,” during Regal’s digital pre-show program, The 2wenty.

A voiceover in the spot mentions the thousands of gifts at Circuit City as Santa spins. The Cars tune is part of Circuit City’s ongoing image campaign.

The 30-second promo spot, via independent Doner in Southfield, Mich., was created specifically to run on large movie screens and, beginning Nov. 22, on the Jumbotron in New York’s Times Square.

Box office handouts, in-lobby danglers and banners, and a soft drink in-lid mini DVD also support the message. The dancing Santa image will become an icon of sorts, appearing on popcorn bags to flag a $1 discount offer on all DVDs and CDs, or $5 off videogames purchased at Circuit City during the holiday season. A mini-CD lid will feature the Dancing Santa ad as well as movie trailers, music videos and promote Oakley sunglasses made with a built-in MP3 player.

Justin Lewis, Circuit City vp of marketing, said the challenge was to approach consumers in new ways. “We have relaunched our brand to ensure we are on as many consumer touch points as possible,” he said.

Spend for the promotion was not revealed. Circuit City spent $215 million on measured media last year, and $105 million through August this year, per TNS Media Intelligence/CMR. Regal Entertainment Group has 560 locations in 40 states.