Lionsgate Entertainment is trying their hand at viral marketing for their adaptation of Will Eisner’s “The Spirit.” Instead of taking a page from The Dark Knight’s playbook though and using everything from ARGs, election vans and Joker-created riddles, they’ve elected to simply leave their marketing campaign in the hands of art students. Nine art students from nine prestigious art colleges across the country will participate in “The Spirit Art School Program.”

I think this is a great move on the part of Lionsgate- showing enough progressive thinking to not only include an audience in the marketing, but make them apart of it at a base level, giving them creative control over it from the get go. Each of the nine ad campaigns will start in each designer’s home town and spread across their respective regions. I’m guessing the hope here is that each artist will capture some kind of regional flare in their design that reflects their surroundings and piques local interest while the program itself garners national curiosity.

Kudos to Lionsgate for not only meeting their audience where they are, but also in a fashion allowing them to make The Spirit their own.

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