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The Smurfs Get the Same Warning As District 9’s Aliens

The matching Smurfs and District 9 billboards.

Does the Sony movie marketing office have a lot of hazardous chemicals, rat poison, or electric fences sitting around? That might explain why they have warning signs on the brain. A Smurfs billboard campaign by Sony's Columbia features a giant stark sign with a red line slashing through a silhouetted Smurf, along with a block-lettered plea to report sightings to the promotional website. Two years ago, Sony's Tristar used the same exact campaign for District 9, but with aliens. What will they put in the red circle for this fall's Moneyball, money or a ball? (Although, to be fair, the Smurfs billboard might be less a cutesy gimmick than a helpful warning to stay away from a film New York Mag's Logan Hill called "a smurfed-up smurfesty.")

Photo: Claude Brodesser-Akner