written by: Chan Tsz Kiu, Vivian

The 80s to 90s was the thriving golden age of Hong Kong movie and entertainment industries. Movies plots usually consist of social echos and humorous jokes to catch the attention of Hong Kongers.

In 1993, Brigitte Lin (林青霞) played the role in the Legend of the Swordsman (東方不敗) for the advertisement of Eastweek (東週刊). It made use of the dialogue and scene in the film to promote the magazine, 「東週刊在手,天下我有」. Recently, Tai Hing (太興) invited Eric Kwok to post as Iron Man to enjoy meal with a black guy in a local Cha Chaan Teng (Tea House茶餐廳) in the advertisement. The ad somehow showcases a kind of Hong Kong spirit: both superhero and people need to eat, for energy to work.

It is perhaps an effective and feasible approach to advertise by borrowing the plots, dialogue and characters from movies. Many famous movies are suitable for the young and old with down-to-earth content. Most importantly, the messages appeals permeated into a wide coverage of audience segments in the society with high popularity, easily gains awareness and spurs noise in the society.

In 2017, Vita introduced the advertisement of the sugar-free green tea by using the idea of God of Cookery (食神). The advertisement also applies some well-known dialogues and scenes which echo with its product, such as「佢高傲,但係宅心仁厚」, to capture the hearts of the public. It is actually quite risky to use Stephen Chow’s movie plot, as people may find the idea “outdated”, as responses from the audiences could sometimes be unpredictable.


Using well-known movie dialogues turned local slang to draw attention from the audience sometimes is a good way to leave an impression. Another advertisement from Daikin Air-conditioner in Taiwan is mimicking plots from the triad movie series of Young and Dangerous (古惑仔). The five-minute-long advertisement presents three classic scenes to promote the three selling points of the air-conditioner. It has successfully created buzz on the Internet. The success of this advertisement can be attributed to their professional production team which helped to present the original classic scenes vividly and touches people emotionally. It is also crucial to pick the right content and characters that works well with specific product/features for relevance. In this kind of “re-making” creative execution, consumers would only appreciate the humor if it is meticulously executed.



One limitation of using movie content to create advertisement is the complexity to tackle with copyrights and approval. In addition, with the movie industry in Hong Kong is undergoing decline in recent years, it may not be easy to find popular and powerful ideas for impactful advertisement.

There are sure to be challenges and dependencies in using movie content as guiding advertising creative. It is all the more desirable to advertise with proper official endorsement instead of derivative production.

Video link:
【堅有內涵訓練班 – 飲神2.0】

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