I've said it before: Readers make great book trailers.
The most watched book trailer on YouTube, with more than ten million hits, was made by a fan. Official book trailers made by publishers often receive just a few thousand hits.
The ten-million-hit wonder, a trailer for Stephenie Meyer's Breaking Dawn, looks like a movie trailer. It even has a fake "Approved for All Audiences" notice at the beginning. Many fan-made book trailers are created by young readers who love a book and can't wait for it to become a movie. They often include the green MPAA ratings card and studio logos. Unconstrained by copyright laws or marketing committees, they capture a book's mood and setting by remixing bits of other movies, television shows and music videos. If there's already a movie adaptation of one book in a series, or a movie is in production, they add clips from the stars' earlier films. If nothing has been slated, they use the video to announce their dream casting.
But despite borrowing motion picture conventions, these young fans are motivated by their love of books. Their imagination should inspire the professionals.
Here's the most watched book trailer ever, and four other great ones:
More than ten million views. The creator lists the following movie sources in addition to the official Twilight trailers: Underworld, The Lord of the Rings, Blood & Chocolate, The Beach, The Messengers, Raven, A Walk to Remember, The Haunted Airman, Into the Wild, Casino Royale, In the Land of Women, and Vanity Fair.
The movie isn’t in production yet, so the fan chose an imaginary cast. The trailer remixes clips from V for Vendetta, Aeon Flux, Cold Mountain, Mr. and Mrs. Smith, Ultraviolet, The Matrix, Nip/Tuck and Serenity.
Another Scott Westerfeld fan made this trailer for the sequel to Uglies. Among the dozens of sources: The Life Before Her Eyes, Thirteen, Lord of War, Into the Wild, Surrogates, The Ruins!, The Dangerous Lives of Altar Boys, Donnie Darko, Requiem for a Dream, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Gossip Girl and Battlestar Galactica.
This trailer is miles ahead of the book’s official video, which had nothing but text and moody music.
Along with being a good trailer, this video has my favorite comment by a creator: "It's not my ideal cast but the clips fit." Wise beyond her years.