BlackBerries on the big screen

Will spots in movies and commercials translate into a comeback for RIM?

The spies in Stephen Soderbergh’s Haywire, an action thriller released earlier this year, are a fractious bunch. They spend most of the film fighting and shooting one another. But they do all agree on one thing: smartphones. Research In Motion’s beleaguered BlackBerry handsets appear prominently in the film. All the major characters use the devices to talk, text and even track one another down during chase scenes.

Despite its declining market share, the BlackBerry has been popping up all over the place. It was the phone of choice in the Mark Wahlberg movie Contraband, and a series of commercials touting the handsets as “tools, not toys” has been in heavy rotation on TV. The BlackBerry Bold, not surprisingly, was a name sponsor at Haywire’s New York premiere. A RIM spokesperson says the company has worked with celebrities, and movie, TV and music producers, for years. Who knows, if the current wave keeps up, it might just regain some of the luster it lost in recent years.




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