While collectors fill up their shelves with memorabilia and promotional merchandise from their favorite movies, some of those items have a shorter shelf life than others. Occasionally, when movie studios are feeling extra creative or the content of the movie calls for it, edible goodies are used to promote upcoming flicks.
Before you get your trick-or-treat on this Halloween, we thought it would be fun to take a look at some of the tastiest treats the studios have cooked up in years past!
We All Scream For Popcorn
Drew Barrymore, who had literally been the poster child for Scream‘s marketing campaign, opens the film by making popcorn and preparing to watch a horror movie. Things quickly go downhill from there when she gets a phone call from a mysterious stranger. As she is terrorized by an unseen killer and quizzed on the very horror movies she had planned to watch, one of the most shocking opening sequences ever unfolds. It’s become so iconic it’s easy to forget just how surprising it really was, and Dimension Films cooked up an awesome promotional item in reference to it.
Absolutely perfect for a horror movie about horror movies, Scream-branded Jiffy-Pop popcorn was distributed to video stores to promote the movie’s release on VHS following its run in theaters. Although I’m not sure if these were actually available to be sold to the public, or just sent to the retailers themselves for promotional purposes, collectors still go “a little mad” to get their hands on these. Even rarer still, an alternate version was released for Scream’s original theatrical release. Featuring a less-colorful alteration on the film’s iconic poster art, these are even more hard to come by than the home video versions. Fan-made replicas of these Scream Jiffy-Pops do exist, so just be aware if you’re a collector in search of the real thing!
Halloween H20 Gets A Little Corny
Two years after Scream reinvigorated the slasher genre, Michael Myers made his big return in Halloween H20: 20 Years Later. Disregarding every sequel except for Halloween II, which picked up immediately following the original and established the lore that Michael and Laurie are siblings, H20 picks up with Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis) two decades after escaping The Shape, having changed her name and become a headmistress at a secluded private school in California. As you might expect, Michael soon makes his big return on October 31st.
To promote the (first) ultimate showdown between Michael Myers and Laurie Strode, Halloween H20-branded bags of candy corn were sent out, perfectly sized for handing out to trick-or-treaters! Twenty one years, one remake, and another retconned sequel later, these Halloween H20 goodies are exceedingly rare and would make a great treat for any Michael Myers fan!
A Sweet Trick ‘r Treat Treat
Michael Dougherty’s Halloween opus Trick ‘r Treat experienced a long road to release, beginning with several small screenings in 2007 before eventually being released on DVD in 2009. Featuring several separate stories set in a small town that intertwine on Halloween night, the movie received rave reviews and has become a cult favorite in the years since. Featuring classic Halloween monsters such as vampires and werewolves, the movie also introduced a new icon in the form of the orange-footie-pajama-wearing Sam. Official Sam merchandise fills the aisles of Halloween stores, proving he’s just as much of a Halloween icon as Michael Myers.
Unfortunately, it appears Warner Bros. did not have much faith in the movie to begin with, hence its unceremonious straight-to-DVD wide release. It received little in the way of initial marketing, instead relying on positive word-of-mouth from horror fans. Nevertheless, to promote a later screening of the movie in 2012, Warner Bros. atoned for their lack of faith with these replicas of Sam’s lollipop made of actual candy! If you can’t get your hands on one of these official promotional suckers, don’t fret – Spirit Halloween is selling officially licensed edible lollipops in their stores this Halloween season!
Leatherface and The Texas Chocolate Massacre
Another fright flick that suffered some setbacks before it was released is Leatherface, the 2017 prequel to the original The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (1974). Though it shared a production company and continuity with 2013’s Texas Chainsaw 3D, Leatherface received multiple delays before finally being released to streaming services and DVD/Blu-Ray, foregoing any form of theatrical release for the first time in the series’ history. Audiences and critics were generally less than impressed by the prequel’s attempts to explain the origin of Jedidiah Sawyer, aka Leatherface.
Despite a general lack of enthusiasm and marketing buzz, overseas markets were treated to an awesome promo item in the form of a Leatherface mask made out of – wait for this… chocolate! Even more disturbing, the white chocolate shell was filled with a bright red concoction resembling blood. Mailed out to lucky members of the press accompanied by a copy of the movie, this creepy confection surely turned some heads!
Curious to see other promotional items in the Collector’s Crypt? Click HERE to see The Blair Witch Project survival packs, or Evil Goat Cheese from The Witch. and Eager to show off some of your own collection? Share your favorite pieces with us on on Facebook, Twitter, Reddit, and be sure to come back next month for the next edition of The Collector’s Crypt!