Tourism Australia has released a mock film trailer for Dundee: The Son of a Legend Returns Home, which aired during last night’s Super Bowl coverage, in an attempt to replicate the "tourism effect" of a blockbuster movie – without actually making it.
Part of a $27 million advertising campaign, the trailer features Melbourne-born Chris Hemsworth and American actor and comedian Danny McBride as Crocodile Dundee’s "son", Brian Dundee.
In the lead-up to the Super Bowl, Tourism Australia had released teaser trailers starring Margot Robbie, Russell Crowe, Hugh Jackman and Isla Fisher – creating a buzz on social media that there was going to be a reboot of the movie franchise.
In a tweet, Tourism Australia acknowledged that the secret had been out for a couple of weeks.
The wait is over. Watch the full official DUNDEE trailer right here. It's the surprise no one saw coming (unless you've been on the Internet during the past two weeks). Visit https://t.co/kadAyLFwZh for more. #SeeAustralia#DundeeTourismAdpic.twitter.com/kxmGItY8tV— Australia (@Australia) February 5, 2018
The trailer features a short cameo by Paul Hogan, now 78, who is reported to have licensed the film’s rights to the campaign for free. Hogan starred as Crocodile Dundee in the original 1986 film, which was that year's second-highest grossing film in the US after Top Gun.
Tourism Australia recruited advertising firm Droga5 to launch the campaign. Speaking to the Hollywood Reporter, the firm said that they had identified that the last major spike in US tourist numbers to Australia followed the release of the original Crocodile Dundee movie.
Droga5 group strategy director Will Davie said: "Can you create that tourism effect that film so uniquely creates without actually making the movie and taking $200 million and calling it a Hollywood blockbuster? The thought here is we know films are motivating, we know films are things people love and bind with.
"Rather than creating more ads that sell Australia with a video and an inspirational soundtrack – because that stuff can just be turned into wallpaper – we wanted something that’s a little bit different. It’s a prank, but also a demonstration of that truth," he added.
US visitors are already on the up in Australia. In the year running up to November 2017, Australia welcomed 777,500 Americans, up 9.8 percent on the previous 12 months – representing an additional 69,000 visitors.
Since the advert aired, NT News has launched a petition for the Crocodile Dundee reboot to be released in real life.
There's some way to go until they will succeed in swaying the Hollywood execs – only 2,700 people have signed it so far.