STOP THE HORROR

Bronze Spike
TitleSTOP THE HORROR
BrandGO GENTLE AUSTRALIA
Product / ServiceASSISTED DYING
CategoryA03. Online: Fiction
EntrantREVOLVER/WILL O'ROURKE Sydney, AUSTRALIA
Idea Creation CUMMINS & PARTNERS Sydney, AUSTRALIA
Production REVOLVER/WILL O'ROURKE Sydney, AUSTRALIA

Credits

Name Company Position
Tom Martin Cummins&Partners Executive Creative Director
Julian Schreiber Cummins&Partners Executive Creative Director
Mandie van der Merwe Cummins&Partners Creative Director/Art Director
Avish Gordhan Cummins&Partners Creative Director/Copywriter
Olivia Etzine Cummins&Partners Integration Manager
Joe Godsell Cummins&Partners Senior Integration Manager
Celia Karl Cummins&Partners Executive Digital Producer
James Tammesild Cummins&Partners Digital Producer
Georgia Pedersen Cummins&Partners Digital Media Manager
Alastair Flack Cummins&Partners Art Director
Lorraine Costello Cummins&Partners Studio Designer
Angus Martin Cummins&Partners Integration Coordinator
Effy Elden Cummins&Partners Digital Developer
Georgina Moxey Cummins&Partners Integrated Producer
Justin Kurzel Revolver/Will O'Rourke Director
Michael Ritchie Revolver/Will O'Rourke Managing Director/Executive Producer
Pip Smart Revolver/Will O'Rourke Executive Producer
Serena Paull Revolver/Will O'Rourke Producer
Alex Kember Revolver/Will O'Rourke Producer
Ari Wegner Revolver/Will O'Rourke Director of Photography
Richard Betts Fin Design + Effects VFX Compositor
Emily Newbould Fin Design + Effects VFX Producer
Peter Sciberras ARC Edit Editor
Ben Eagleton BE Colour Colourist
Sam Petty Sam Petty Sound Design & Mix
BE Colour BE Colour Colour Grade
Odd Studios Odd Studios SPFX Make Up
Allison Meadows Mullinars Casting Consultants Casting Director
Fin Design + Effects Fin Design + Effects Post Production
ARC Edit ARC Edit Edit House

The Campaign

We created an unwatchable film, called Stop The Horror. It was released as a new horror movie by Australian director Justin Kurzel (Assassin’s Creed, Snowtown), with trailers, director interviews and an official Facebook page used to draw people in. Stop The Horror immersed the viewer in the true story of Greg Sims as it recounted his brutal last days. It captured the unrelievable pain and unnecessary suffering he had to endure at the end of his life. It was so distressing an onscreen ‘Stop The Horror’ button was included so the viewer could escape the film. Once clicked, we revealed how to truly stop the horror - by contacting their local politician and expressing support for this compassionate law. Based on their postal code, we gave the viewer the phone number, email address and physical address of their local politician so that they could truly help stop the horror.

Creative Execution

The campaign launched on 14 September 2017 in social media, with a Facebook-led campaign, seeding the film’s premiere with an official page and video trailers. This was all backed by a targeted Victoria-first strategy to engage existing advocates and new millennial audiences. To maximise the value of our $20,000 media budget, this digital-first campaign was focussed on driving intrigue, and generating outrage and talkability. In PR, we used a phased outreach strategy backed by issues planning, key messaging and bespoke media packages. We used digital media exclusives at launch, with a focus on news and culture to ignite rapid social sharing. A major TV exclusive was secured to supercharge the debate. All social and PR content drove audiences to our website where they could watch the 6-minute film. A data capture page allowed us to contact viewers directly thereafter via eDM to drive further action.

Stop The Horror went viral within 24 hours of the launch, with the average viewer watching 3min 15sec of the film before hitting the ‘Stop The Horror’ button. The campaign made headlines on local and international news platforms – including features in The Australian, Mamamia, The Project, The Mirror (UK), UNILAD (UK), CNN Chile (Chile) plus outlets in Ireland, Peru, USA, Mexico. Total earned media = $4.2m Total reach = +280M 190,000+ sessions 10,000+ petition submissions Arguably, the only result that matters is that, for the first time in history, parliament legalised voluntary assisted dying. Victoria is now the only state in Australia with such a law.

With Stop The Horror, we engaged audiences in a totally new way. We turned a campaign to support the legalisation of voluntary assisted dying into a launch of an interactive horror film. It was directed by a popular Australian horror director to draw people in. But it was virtually unwatchable. Stop The Horror immersed the viewer in the disturbing true story of a terminally ill patient in his final days. When the audience clicked away from the horrific visuals, we explained that to truly stop the horror, people needed to voice their support for this new law to local politicians.

Typically, the subject of voluntary assisted dying draws the attention of an older audience. However, we believed that by getting a younger, more activist-driven demographic to be part of the conversation, we would make it difficult for politicians to ignore the message. Research suggested, naturally, that most people aren’t drawn to the subject of assisted dying. While personal stories of the end of life choices provide a powerful mechanism to drive support, people don’t necessarily want to engage with such harrowing truths. We realised the need to show the reality of life for a terminally ill patient in a way that drew people into our message before they shut off. To this end, our famous director, Justin Kurzel was part of the strategy. His name, and the interviews he did with sites like FilmInk, legitimized the announcement of our new horror movie and helped us attract our broader target audience.

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