Spotted! Fox brings Avatar’s Pandora to the people

The studio's home entertainment division brings the world of Avatar to life in a dynamic domination of Toronto's Union Station transit hub to promote the launch of the DVD and Blu-ray.

All those people still suffering from ‘Pandora Effect‘ after seeing Avatar this Christmas are in luck: they can now return to the magical world of the film while waiting for the Go Train.

Last evening, Mississauga, ON-based 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment Canada unveiled the centrepiece of its Avatar DVD/Blu-ray release campaign – a multimedia domination of Union Station in Toronto. Featuring a 15-foot, three-dimensional recreation of ‘Hometree,’ the Na’vi’s home base in Pandora, the domination is designed to bring the fictional world onto the Go Train platform. Features include two-dimensional versions of Avatar main characters Jake and Neytiri, large-scale decals on the walls, pillars and floor (which is modified to look like the tops of trees) and platform digital screens that will roll footage from the film. It’s the first time that IMA Outdoor, who owns the media space inside Union Station, has allowed a platform domination to extend to the digital screens, Stephanie Jacobs, marketing manager, Fox Home Entertainment, tells MiC

‘We wanted to recreate Pandora and bring something to the fans,’ she says. ‘[Avatar] was so huge theatrically, we needed to bring that experience to the marketing campaign as well.’

Targeting the 18- to 34-year-old male demographic, the DVD/Blu-ray release campaign was handled on the creative side by FHE and Toronto-based Timbol Design Communications, with Union Station OOH by Toronto’s IMA Outdoor and media by ZenithOptimedia. The OOH at Union will be up for four weeks starting today, and will be complemented by a sports-heavy TV strategy that includes brandsell on CBC’s Hockey Night in Canada during the NHL playoffs, TSN, and The Score.

On TSN, there will be an Avatar-customized one-minute opening sequence before the hockey game on the eve of the DVD’s release that combines hockey clips with Avatar footage. There will also be a Quebec TV buy including RDS, MusiquePlus, Canal, Ztélé and Teletoon. (Avatar media fun fact: The film’s working title was ’880′ to reflect the fact that it would appeal to anyone from eight to 80 years old, Jacobs says.)

Online, the plan features a mix of rich media display ads and homepage dominations across mainstream Canadian portals, sports sites such as and (a homepage domination of the main site and team sites), gamer site, YouTube and Facebook (homepage video and poll sponsorship).

Since Avatar was such a massive film, Jacobs says, they really felt they couldn’t do anything less when approaching the marketing campaign behind the home release.

‘We want to own everything,’ she says of the media strategy. ‘That’s what we had to do.’

The campaign has been built in three tiers. The first will support the April 22 DVD/Blu-ray release over four weeks, then break for a few weeks, and resurge again in June to target Father’s Day gift-buyers. Then the campaign will pause again for the summer and revamp one more time in the fall for the ‘Ultimate’ edition of the DVD/Blu-ray that includes bonus footage and extras. Plans for a 3D home entertainment release are not yet finalized, due to the low consumer penetration of the technology so far, Jacobs says.