Maple Pictures blasts The Expendables

A media campaign for the Aug. 13 film includes a subway-station domination in Toronto and sports-oriented media buy that links to an innovative YouTube execution by Lionsgate.

Upcoming action flick The Expendables promises to be anything but subtle, and, appropriately, neither is the media buy to promote it.

Opening Aug. 13, the Lionsgate film, distributed in Canada by Maple Pictures, stars Sylvester Stallone alongside eight other major action stars, including the Governor himself, Arnold Schwarzenegger.

The film is being promoted in Canada with a hard-to-miss media plan targeted at males 18 to 49. Commuters on both platforms of the Yonge-Bloor subway station in Toronto are currently being enveloped by all things Expendables, with an ad-domination that includes a video board, column wraps, backlit boards, subway boards and five mural decals. The OOH component includes monster-sized wild postings as well, created so that all the actors in the film would be featured prominently, Joanna Miles, VP marketing, Maple Pictures, tells MiC.

A teaser TV campaign started during the World Cup and ran during key games in the tournament, and the sports theme of the buy continues with a Blue Jays/Rogers Centre ad buy next week for the series against the Red Sox (which includes advertising on the giant LED screens) and Maple will be giving away passes at the Toronto Football Club game this Saturday. Additionally, there is a contest currently running on, offering up the chance to win an all-star sports weekend of the winner’s choice.

The online buy also includes skinning and display advertising on male-targeted sites such as,, and and a YouTube masthead on Aug. 13, which links to what is probably one of the coolest YouTube executions MiC has seen, created as part of the US media plan. The execution features Stallone battling the video units on the side of the page from the main video window until he blows them away with a bazooka.

Media for Maple is handled by Initiative in Toronto and creative adaptation is handled in-house by the Maple creative department, who created the subway OOH especially for Canada.