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The Detective Pikachu Leak Is the Best Way to Market the Film

The marketing team is genius.

Pikachu looks for clues in the trailer for Detective Pikachu.

Detective Pikachu fans were in for a surprise when last night, Ryan Reynolds tweeted the link to an apparent leak of his upcoming film Detective Pikachu.


It starts off pretty much how you’d expect—Warner Bros logo, about 45 seconds to a minute’s worth of footage of Justice Smith’s character walking down the street—before the music comes in.

Then, the rest of the hour and 42 minute-long run time is just footage of Pikachu dancing to eighties music.

Whoever came up with this stunt deserves a bonus of some kind. This only generated more positive buzz for the film; after all, who doesn’t love Pikachu being adorable? And who can resist clicking on an apparent leak tweeted out by the movie’s star? While reviews have trended towards the positive, one last excellent marketing boost before opening weekend is always a good thing.

As IndieWire pointed out, this isn’t the first time Reynolds has staged a leak to drum up buzz for a project. Many assume that Reynolds was behind the early Deadpool fight sequence leak that went viral and proved that audiences wanted an R-rated superhero action comedy, and that they wanted Deadpool’s level of gratuitous violence as well. This leak isn’t to drum up audience support but rather to have fun trolling the audience.

Detective Pikachu is a film that’s almost ready-made to be meme’d. By essentially crafting a nearly two hour long rickroll, Reynolds and the marketing team have tapped into weird Internet humor and pulled off an excellent stunt.

Detective Pikachu opens in theaters this Friday. Whether the film will be as weird and Internet humor-y as this tease was, we don’t know, but I’m suddenly even more excited to watch that adorable little animated Pikachu dance his way into my heart.

(image: Warner Bros)

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Kate (they/them) says sorry a lot for someone who is not sorry about the amount of strongly held opinions they have. Raised on a steady diet of The West Wing and classic film, they are now a cosplayer who will fight you over issues of inclusion in media while also writing coffee shop AU fanfic for their favorite rare pairs.