It burns! Vampire posters catch fire in the sun

New American television series, The Passage, found a brilliant way to promote its premiere in Brazil. The show, which sees scientists battling against genetically altered vampires, is the latest in a long line of fiction centred around the folklore monsters. But with its combustible posters, the show has proven that there's still plenty of ways to drum up interest in the famous blood-suckers.

Created in partnership between Fox and ad agency BETC São Paulo, the marketing campaign for The Passage includes four displays of The Vampire Poster. This design comfortably sits alongside the most inspirational poster designs we've ever seen thanks to its vampiric aversion to sunlight.

As we all know, vampires can't stand a direct hit of sunlight as it causes them to curl up in flames. It's one of their biggest weaknesses, along with stakes to the heart, garlic, and door thresholds. And while a dose of vitamin D is bad news for vampires, it's a dream opportunity for advertisers.

Vampire poster at night

The posters appeared on the streets of São Paulo [Image: BETC/Havas]

By coating the back of the posters in a special paint that combusts in sunlight, the creative team were able to make an advert that truly reflected its subject. Not that vampires have reflections, mind. But you know what we mean.

Upon being exposed to daylight, the posters burst into flames, garnering lots of interest and online impressions in the process. A glass case stopped the posters from harming passers by, and a message on the base of the display told viewers all they needed to know about the upcoming series.

Bizarrely, this isn't the only ad campaign we've seen recently that centres around posters going up in flames. Burger King recently invited customers to set fire to its competition's posters in exchange for a free Whopper. Although that was an AI campaign, so there were no real-life fires.

The Vampire Posters have a brief lifespan, given that they can't survive the day. But having achieved a reach 688 per cent higher than estimated by investors (according to the stats at the end of the video), this short and sweet campaign appears to have hit the spot.

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Dom Carter

Dom Carter is a freelance writer who specialises in art and design. Formerly a staff writer for Creative Bloq, his work has also appeared on Creative Boom and in the pages of ImagineFX, Computer Arts, 3D World, and .net. He has been a D&AD New Blood judge, and has a particular interest in picture books.