×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Columbia puts ‘Dewey’ on tour duty

John C. Reilly to perform in character across U.S.

Judd Apatow-produced films usually don’t need much marketing help.

But in the case of Apatow’s “Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story,” Columbia Pictures is launching a novel tie-in for the unconventional comedy. Star John C. Reilly will tour the country in character as Dewey Cox, the fictional rock ‘n’ roll icon whose music influenced a nation. Reilly will perform live as Cox with his band, the Hard Walkers, for the “Cox Across America Tour.”

The tour kicks off Wednesday at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland and will wend through Chicago; Austin, Texas; Nashville; San Francisco; Los Angeles; and New York’s Knitting Factory.

Each show will be preceded by a special screening of “Walk Hard.” Tour serves Sony by promoting the film, which opens Dec. 21, as well as Columbia Records’ soundtrack. The album includes 30 original songs and hits stores today.

Col is looking to repeat the successful marketing stunt it carried out last year with another Reilly starrer, “Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby.” For that film, Will Ferrell made the rounds on the NASCAR circuit as the eponymous Ricky Bobby. That comedy grossed more than $148 million domestically for the studio.

“He’s unleashing his inner rock star,” said Valerie Van Galder, president of domestic marketing for Columbia TriStar Motion Picture Group, who credits Reilly and Apatow as the brains behind the ploy. “But this is a little different than ‘Talladega Nights,’ because it actually requires him to perform live. It works, though, because in addition to being a prodigiously talented actor, John is also a fabulous singer.”

The Jake Kasdan-helmed film also stars Jenna Fischer, Tim Meadows and Kristen Wiig. Apatow is a co-scripter and producer.

Reilly was nominated for a supporting actor Oscar for the musical “Chicago,” which included a solo number for him.

While unusual, the concert promo is not unprecedented. In 2004, Kevin Spacey launched an 11-city tour to promote the Bobby Darin biopic “Beyond the Sea.” Spacey performed in character at venues including L.A.’s Wiltern Theater.

More Film

  • Bluebird review

    SXSW Film Review: ‘Bluebird’

    As affectionate as a love letter but as substantial as an infomercial, Brian Loschiavo’s “Bluebird” may be of most interest to casual and/or newly converted country music fans who have occasionally wondered about the songwriters behind the songs. There’s a better than even-money chance that anyone who’s a loyal and longtime aficionado of the musical [...]

  • ‘Wonder Park’ Tops Studios’ TV Ad

    ‘Wonder Park’ Tops Studios’ TV Ad Spending for the Fourth Week in a Row

    In this week’s edition of the Variety Movie Commercial Tracker, powered by the TV advertising attention analytics company iSpot.tv, Paramount Pictures claims the top spot in spending for the fourth week in row with “Wonder Park.” Ads placed for the animated film had an estimated media value of $5.18 million through Sunday for 1,718 national [...]

  • Michael B. Jordan Jordan Vogt-Roberts

    Film News Roundup: Michael B. Jordan, Jordan Vogt-Roberts Team for Monster Movie

    In today’s film news roundup, Michael B. Jordan is producing a creature feature, billiards champ Cisero Murphy is getting a movie, the sixth Terminator movie gets a title, and Graham King receives an honor. PROJECT UNVEILED New Regency and Michael B. Jordan’s Outlier Society are partnering on an untitled monster movie from “Kong: Skull Island” [...]

  • Nicolas Cage

    Nicolas Cage to Star in Martial Arts Actioner 'Jiu Jitsu'

    Nicolas Cage will star in the martial arts actioner “Jiu Jitsu,” based on the comic book of the same name. The cast will also include Alain Moussi, who stars in the “Kickboxer” franchise. Dimitri Logothetis is producing with Martin Barab and directing from a script he wrote with Jim McGrath. Highland Film Group is handling [...]

  • Chinese success of Thai film "Bad

    Chinese, Thai Shingles Pact for Co-Production Fund at FilMart

    A deal to establish a 100 million yuan ($14.9 million) co-production fund between China and Thailand was struck at FilMart on Tuesday to help launch TV and film projects that will appeal to Chinese and Southeast Asian audience. The deal that was struck by China’s Poly Film Investment Co., TW Capital from Thailand and Thai [...]

  • Kevin Tsujihara

    Kevin Tsujihara's Ouster Kicks Off a Week of Major Disruption in the Media Business

    The sudden ouster of Warner Bros. Entertainment chief Kevin Tsujihara kicked off what is likely to go down as one of the most extraordinary weeks in Hollywood history, spelling enormous turmoil and transition across the media landscape. In addition to the news about Tsujihara, which comes amid a wider shake-up of leadership at AT&T’s WarnerMedia, [...]

  • Buddha in Africa

    More Than Half of Films at Hot Docs Film Festival Are Directed by Women

    More than half of the films playing at Hot Docs, North America’s largest documentary festival, are directed by women, the Canadian event said Tuesday. The festival’s 26th edition, which runs April 25-May 5, will screen 234 films, with 54% of the directors being women. In the competitive International Spectrum program, notable films receiving their world [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content