Burger King and McDonald’s are fighting again.
It’s not just the usual competition between two fast-food chains, because this time, Stephen King and his favorite evil clown are involved.
It, a reboot of King’s 1986 novel about a deadly jester, has been breaking box office records around the world thanks to its certified classic status and some brilliant guerrilla marketing involving super-creepy balloons tied to grates.
Burger King Russia even filed an official complaint demanding the government pull the movie from theaters because—get this—its villain Pennywise looks too much like one Ronald McDonald.
Hamburg, Germany-based agency Grabarz & Partner saw this as an opportunity, turning an area preview of the film into “the longest advertisement Burger King ever had.”
That was quite amusing, and the viewers in Hamburg seemed to be very much in on the joke. The fact that none of them were budding 10-year-old horror fans terrified by the very mention of Pennywise probably had something to do with it.
We’re still puzzled by the idea that the film’s popularity would somehow give McDonald’s an unfair advantage over its chief rival in Russia, but there you go.
Why it’s hot: “It” has broken multiple records as a horror movie and the fact that Burger King found a way to leverage this, while still staying relevant to their brand, is the epitome of thinking outside the box.