7-Eleven Unveils Thor Movie Promotion

“Our customers are both enthusiastic supporters of action-hero movies and Slurpee-lovers,” says 7-Eleven vice president.

When the first Super Hero movie of the year hits the big screen, you can be sure a 7-Eleven fun-filled Slurpee promotion, with collectible cups, straws and a crazy-colored flavor, isn’t far behind … or in many cases, out in front of the U.S. premiere.

This year, Slurpee heroes, inspired by Thor, a movie from Marvel Studios and Paramount Pictures due to hit theaters May 6, 2011, is thundering into participating 7-Eleven stores in the U.S. and Canada for the month of April.

The newest Marvel Studios movie tells the epic story of Thor, which spans across the Marvel Universe from present day Earth to the realm of Asgard. At the center of the story is The Mighty Thor, a powerful but arrogant warrior whose reckless actions reignite an ancient war. Thor is cast down to Earth and forced to live among humans as punishment. Once here, Thor learns what it takes to be a true hero when the most dangerous villain of his world sends the darkest forces of Asgard to invade Earth.

Produced by Kevin Feige, directed by Kenneth Branagh, from a screenplay by Ashley Edward Miller, Zack Stentz and Don Payne and a story by J. Michael Straczynski and Mark Protosevich, the production is the first full-length feature film about the Norse god of thunder and long-time Marvel comic book Super Hero known for the power he wields with his hammer. The movie stars Chris Hemsworth, Natalie Portman, Anthony Hopkins, Tom Hiddleston and Jaimie Alexander with a cameo appearance by a 7-Eleven store, also featured in the trailer promoting the film.

In addition to the in-store promotion, special cups and straws, 7-Eleven has added an interactive social aspect with its recently launched Slurpee smart phone app.  During the month of April, the app will be re-imaged with a Thor overlay, and visitors will be invited to check in via Foursquare at 7-Eleven stores around the country.  With every check-in, Slurpee fans will accumulate prizes and Slurpee Rewards points redeemable by phone or at www.slurpee.com.

Prizes include Thor mobile phone backgrounds, a Thor badge that shows up on the app with check-in, a one-month subscription to Marvel’s digital comics and a 30-minute session with Slurpee secretary, 7-Eleven’s online concierge service that provides services ranging from answering trivia questions to reporting on sports scores to helping with homework.

Thor fans also can use their Slurpee rewards points to view a three-minute, behind-the-scenes video on the making of the movie, produced by Marvel. The documentary short is available exclusively to 7-Eleven’s Slurpee Rewards participants online, April 1-15, after which Marvel will release the piece publicly.

7-Eleven has created 10 different collectible cups for its Slurpee and Big Gulp beverages, including two limited-edition molded plastic mugs featuring Thor and the Destroyer, one of the villains in the movie.  Among the eight collectible cups are featured Thor’s nemesis and step-brother Loki, and Sif, a goddess who carries a big sword … and a torch for Thor.

Aptly-named Blue Lightning Blast, the bright, turquoise blue Slurpee flavor is described as a thunderous blend of raspberry and tangerine flavors made by Dr Pepper.

Character spoon-straws have been growing in popularity since 7-Eleven introduced them four years ago.  For April, exclusive spoon-straws feature the same four movie characters as the cups – Thor, Destroyer, Loki and Sif – in action-figure form for a suggested retail price of $1.99 each.

“There’s a reason for the particular success of Super Heroes at 7-Eleven,” said Rita Bargerhuff, 7-Eleven Inc. vice president and chief marketing officer.  “Our customers are both enthusiastic supporters of action-hero movies and Slurpee-lovers.  They relish a first peek at movies and enjoy supporting products that resonate with them.  These fans appreciate the chance to engage in ways that are meaningful and fun and that also build anticipation for a movie’s release.”

Thor marks the eighth time in as many years that 7-Eleven has partnered with Marvel on a movie featuring one of their larger-than-life Super Heroes.  Even as far back as 1975 and 1977, 7-Eleven offered Slurpee cups with Marvel Super Heroes, many of which still show up on eBay and collector’s sites.

As part of 7-Eleven’s first major promotion of the year, the company created a 60-second radio spot for select U.S. markets and online advertising calling on customers to become the “Thor of Your Store.”

Assisting 7-Eleven in developing the partnership and promotion for the Thor program is FreshWorks, 7-Eleven, Inc.’s advertising and marketing agency, which is a consortium of Omnicom companies.

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