One of the world’s goriest and most lucrative film franchises returns this October, along with a provocative marketing campaign: a blood drive.
To promote the upcoming release of the eighth film in the Saw horror franchise, Jigsaw, Lionsgate is running an actual blood drive, popping up in 25 cities across the U.S., starting with New York on Oct. 5.
Lionsgate rolled out the campaign online, dubbed “All Types Welcome,” on Sunday, according to The New York Times. The slogan is a reaction against the FDA’s controversial blood donation rules, one of which prohibits men from donating if they’ve had sex with another man within the last 12 months. These donor referral rules, which the FDA claims as HIV-preventative, have been slammed as discriminatory toward gay and bisexual men.
So, Lionsgate, led by chief brand officer Tim Palen, aims to lobby against the FDA, attempting to raise awareness of and ditch discriminatory barriers to donation.
The “All Types Welcome” drive features posters with eight different “nurses” including transgender model and club queen Amanda Lepore, veteran NYC party promoter Susanne Bartsc, albino model Shaun Ross, South Sudanese model Nyakim Gatwech, Rotten Tomatoes senior editor Grae Drake, “glam gore” model Mykie, and fitness star Dan Rockwell.
It’s not the first blood drive attached to a Saw movie; Lionsgate has been running blood drives since the first film in 2004, each with a different theme.
“The Saw blood drive has been a tradition since the first Saw movie became a record-breaking franchise in 2004,” says the film website. “Past campaigns have showcased vintage nurses as the blood drive ambassadors. Public support has been overwhelming, leading to incredible participation and real lives saved.”
Lionsgate’s “All Types Welcome” blood drive kicks off in New York on Oct. 5. If you give blood, you’ll nab a ticket to see the movie when it’s out Oct. 27 — and you’ll be contributing to Hollywood’s attempt to take on the FDA. Could it work?