Dark Knight Rises: The mysterious viral campaign

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Thanks to the efforts of the Twitter community, new images of the film “The Dark Knight Rises” are now floating about the internet. It’s a nonstop cycle these days, Twitter breaks the news, leaks photos and channels campaigns.

That nonstop nature of continuous tweets is what makes Twitter so appealing to us. As an audience we lap up every bit of information that flutters though our Twitter feeds. By feeding on this frenzied source of content, next year’s potential blockbuster, The Dark Knight Rises has begun to employ the services of Twitter in what could be referred to as one of the most inventive campaigns to ever hit the internet.

This is not the first time that Twitter has been used to successfully spread a film or commercial across the internet. Most notable examples include the “Man on a Horse” campaign which resurrected the dying brand of Old Spice by tweeting whacky YouTube clips and the Volkswagen “The Force” advert which started its life on Twitter and eventually ended up as one of the most successful adverts ever run during a Superbowl Sunday.

When the website for The Dark Knight Rises (have your earphones ready) first appeared via Twitter, fans went wild. The page is nothing more than a blank page with twenty-three seconds of chanting audio. Thanks to a single inventive Twitter follower, the audio clip was quickly decoded and on the 20th of May, the mystery was quickly unravelled.

“RiskProduction”, a member of the SuperheroHype forum was the one who decoded the chants via an audio application which resulted in the discovery of a single word, “#thefirerises”. The word was spelt across the audio spectrum, much like in the image below.

This Twitter hashtag led the user to an account called @TheFireRises that linked to this final site which contained a collage of images, made up of the Twitter and Facebook account profile images of users who had discovered the website and shared it across social networks. The instant that the user “RiskProduction” began sharing the website, an avalanche of link-sharing occurred and in less than a day, the image was complete.

For users who visit the website now, they will have the opportunity to view the image as it loads, and can see how the collage of profile pictures forms the image of Tom Hardy as Bane in The Dark Knight Rises. The image is now complete and over thirteen-thousand fans (and counting) have joined @TheFireRises as they continuously spread the good word of Batman. On the 20th of July 2012, the film will release to an audience created from the inventiveness of social media.

To date, this could be one of the most inventive and mind-boggling teaser campaigns ever released and the fans of Chris Nolan’s upcoming blockbuster lapped up the opportunity to become part of this living image, bound by the actions of ten thousand eager followers.

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