Amazon Offers Manchester-by-the-Sea Residents Free Prime Memberships

Manchester by the Sea Still_embed - Publicity - EMBED 2017
Claire Folger/Roadside Attractions

"On movies that are small, one problem is you always feel you don’t have enough time. If you feel like it's hard and scary and you face it, you can feel you've done something good. Usually if it feels like fun, it ends up not being very good," says Casey Affleck.

The real-life residents of Manchester-by-the-Sea saw the name of their tiny town on Cape Ann in Essex County, Mass., splashed all over newspapers, billboards, movie theater marquees and even on stage during the Oscars over the past 14 months or so as Kenneth Lonergan's film of the same name broke out from the indie pack. 

The pic delivered the first two Oscars for streaming service Amazon, which has found a way to thank those 5,136 townsfolk for, in a way, lending out their name to Hollywood: free Amazon Prime memberships for one year and Wickedly Prime Popcorn to go with it.

The latter marks Amazon’s latest foray into private label foods and features such movie-ready treats as buttery caramel popcorn with a hint of real vanilla bean meets sharp and tangy aged cheddar cheese. The freebies come just days before the film's Amazon Prime Video debut on Friday.

"We wanted customers in the town to enjoy popcorn and a movie on us," Amazon Video vp Greg Hart explained Monday in a statement. "Manchester by the Sea is a masterpiece representing the best of cinematic storytelling. In other words, it is wicked awesome."

So how much does such a marketing stunt set Amazon back? Each Amazon Prime membership alone costs $99 per year. Plus the popcorn, of course.