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Brands line up for Bond sequel

Olga Kurylenko to push Ford's Ka car

James Bond is bringing back some familiar brands in “Quantum of Solace.”

Sequel to “Casino Royale” will again be backed by Ford Motor Co., Heineken beer, Smirnoff vodka, Omega watches, Virgin Atlantic, Sony Ericsson cell phones and other Sony electronics. These brands all have products placed in the film and each will shell out tens of millions of dollars as a promotional partner of the pic.

Sony Pictures, which is distribbing the movie, declined to disclose how much the brands are ponying up, but returning partners spent up to $100 million worldwide on ad efforts around “Casino Royale,” industryites estimate. The same is expected this time around.

As was the case then, Daniel Craig, who reprises his role as 007, won’t be the sole face to promote the products. Bond girl Olga Kurylenko, who plays feisty 007 ally Camille in the pic, is being used to push Heineken beer and the latest version of Ford’s small European car, the Ka.

The 22nd film in the franchise will mark the fifth time that the beer company has co-promoted a Bond adventure.

“Our long association with James Bond has helped enhance the profile of the Heineken brand across the world,” said Stefan Orlowski, group commerce director for Heineken, which used Eva Green in its ads associated with “Casino Royale.” Bond will again drive his signature Aston Martin in the pic. Ford brands Volvo and Range Rover and other Ford vehicles also make prominent appearances with characters behind the wheels.

The redesigned version of the Ka will roll out in European dealerships around the Nov. 7 release of the film. A special-edition “Solace”-themed Ka will be sold that features metallic gold paint and exterior graphics. Ford is spending most of its movie tie-in coin in Europe.

Sony Ericsson will release a limited edition Titanium Silver C902 Cyber-shot phone, also seen in the film, around the release of the pic. Company’s products appeared in the previous two outings.

Virgin Atlantic began its relationship with Bond’s producers with “Casino Royale,” in which the airline’s planes were shown and company prexy Richard Branson made a cameo.

The Bond franchise has long been a magnet for marketers looking to associate their wares with a character who favors high-end products. Property has proved so valuable that brands have returned to the films year after year, locking out rivals.

Smirnoff vodka made its original appearance in Bond’s first outing, 1962’s “Dr. No.”

Sony and the franchise’s EON Prods. have opted to limit the number of promo partners to about seven, the same as for “Casino Royale.” The 2002 Bond installment “Die Another Day” was packed with some 20 tie-ins — so much so that critics dubbed it “Buy Another Day.”

Fewer deals enable the brands to stand out more and keep marketers happy, especially when they’re ponying up millions of dollars to tout their association with 007.

And studios are only happy to keep partners pleased considering that the dollars they’re spending often double a pic’s marketing budget and expand the reach of a film’s campaign.

Brand-backed pushes will include TV, print, radio, online and other advertising to launch in 40 countries.

Campaigns start rolling out in October, a month before the pic unspools.

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