Super Bowl will show fewer movies

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During this year's Super Bowl XLI, don't expect to see as many Coming Attractions as before--Hollywood film studios are advertising only two films, as opposed to last year's eight.

The films that will be advertised are the Terrence Howard-Bernie Mac inner-city teacher drama Pride, from Lionsgate, and the Disney motorcycle comedy Wild Hogs, starring John Travolta, Tim Allen, Martin Lawrence, and William H. Macy.

The pre-game show will see Paramount sponsorship and the promotion of Eddie Murphy's comedy Norbit. Sony Pictures will also promote the upcoming Nicholas Cage comic book adaptation Ghost Rider.

The trend of major motion pictures advertising during the Super Bowl began in 1996, according to Variety. Then, Fox's Independence Day was the only film to advertise during the game, and the opening weekend box office of the film was astronomical--presumably in part because of the hype built up by the Super Bowl ad. Since then, studios have jumped into the fray, becoming the second-largest Super Bowl advertiser after beer.

This year, studios are diverting their ad dollars to the Web and other TV spots, targeting such shows as Heroes, Grey's Anatomy, and American Idol. Other advertisers are also scaling back, with Unilever and Proctor & Gamble both decreasing their presence during the game. The void is being filled with snack foods, soft drinks, and, of course, beer.

The Super Bowl is the top-rated single broadcast of the year. Last year's game drew 141 million viewers.

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