What: The first trailer for a feature film based on a Pepsi ad character played by NBA star Kyrie Irving.
Who: Pepsi, Temple Hill Entertainment
Why we care: This is either going to be awesome or an abomination. But since this is just the first—and surprisingly promising—trailer, we’re still in the pre-Rotten Tomatoes score salad days of the “Uncle Drew” marketing cycle.
What started with one Pepsi Max stunt campaign back in 2012 exploded into a multi-part gag that has attracted more than 100 million views on YouTube alone. That popularity has the hopes that taking Uncle Drew to Hollywood would lead to blockbuster success. That’s not the only ad connection, as it’s directed by Charles Stone III, who you may recognize as the director and one of the stars behind Budweiser’s iconic “Wassup” ad.
It’s not the first time an advertising concept has made the jump to film or TV–remember Cavemen (also starring Uncle Drew‘s Nick Kroll) or Ernest P. Worrell?–but the list of successes is short to non-existent. Here, with buzz-worthy non-NBA stars LilRey Howery and Tiffany Haddish involved, the ambition is admirable.JB