What a difference a day makes. The day I'm referring to is 7/18/08, when the Watchmen trailer debuted in front of The Dark Knight, which so far has grossed more than $400 million dollars in the U.S. alone.
In one day, people who'd never even heard of Watchmen were suddenly intrigued, and in some cases even eagerly anticipating the movie. My CNET colleague Bonnie Cha told me the trailer gave her "chills." This sort of reaction from Watchmen noobs was just the kind Warner Bros. and director Zack Snyder were going for, I'm sure. As a longtime fan of the Watchmen comic, I'd already watched the trailer a good 20 times before sitting down to see The Dark Knight. And I'm sure I wasn't the only veteran who was giddy as a schoolboy when watching it on the big screen.
DC comics has also surely appreciated the interest the trailer sparked in the original collected 12-issue series of the comic. Today, it's No. 9 on the overall best-selling books list and No. 2 in fiction.
Over the next few months, until the movie's March 2009 release, anticipation will only grow, and Warner Bros. is capitalizing already. It recently released the first episode of the Watchmen motion comic, and already its popularity is impressive. It's currently listed as No. 2 on the best-selling TV shows on iTunes. The first episode costs $1.99, or you can buy the whole season for $19.99 and save four bucks. Either way, if you're curious about the story and don't mind spoiling the movie, this is a great way to (somewhat) see what the fuss is about.
Cruel and Unusual Productions--headed by one of the movie's producers--has taken the art from the comic and animated it, making it into basically an animated movie. Now, don't get too excited. They've only used the original art assets from the book, so don't expect Wall-e or anything up to Disney cel animation standards. The animation here is crude, but very effective. … Read more