Spike rides with Acura to fests


On the heels of its recent merger with iFilm.com, Spike.com is providing on-the-ground coverage of major film festivals starting with the Sundance Film Festival, and it's bringing sponsor Acura along for the ride.

Spike.com will shoot the Acura TL model at Sundance, the Miami Film Festival, the Aspen Film Festival and South by Southwest to create specially produced openers and closers that will run just before and after content about the festivals online on Spike's Guys Guide to the Festivals. Sister independent film site Atom.com also will have the option of running the content along with the openers and closers integrating the Acura.

"We're going beyond pre-roll or billboard and really integrating the car as part of the rollup into the introduction of the actual content for the user, so it's a seamless experience," said Rebecca Keszkowski, senior director of digital integrated marketing for Spike.com. "Not only is the car part of the experience, but it's in the setting. That was a conscious decision to make sure that we really incorporated it in everything we did."

One Acura vehicle will travel with each Spike.com production team to each of the four film festivals. It's the first time Spike.com/iFilm.com and Atom.com are providing on-the-ground coverage of the parties, red carpets, films and events at the festivals rather than just featuring clips and trailers on their sites.

"Film festivals are something that our users get very excited about, and our content team felt strongly that this could be a great platform for us to pursue from a consumer perspective," Keszkowski said. "We were prepared to take it to market, and the first advertiser that we brought it to and started conversations with about collaboration was Acura."

The site will have a festival look that incorporates Acura and Spike branding. It also will host a Fast Lane to the Festivals sweepstakes, granting one grand prize winner and a friend the chance to fly to four film festivals next year.

Atom.com, a sister site that like Spike.com is part of the MTV Networks entertainment group, will highlight key films, directors and actors, mostly via clips and trailers. The site will have a skinned environment that features the Acura and will feature some of the Spike.com festival footage.