Square-Enix: Leona Lewis “allowed us to reach out”

In an interview with MCV, Square-Enix VP of brand for the PAL region, Larry Sparks has commented that collaboratting with pop singer Leona Lewis has allowed Final Fantasy XIII to reach a wider audience. The excerpt from the interview follows below:

How is Leona Lewis’ involvement set to benefit the game’s launch?

Leona Lewis has become a star in such a short space of time and her appeal to the ‘now generation’, plus her stylish classy music, provided a great opportunity to collaborate on Final Fantasy XIII. It has allowed us to reach out and touch consumers who may never have heard of the franchise, which can only be a great thing.

Whether or not the partnership with Leona (and even more so, SE’s terrible tremendous marketing efforts) have really helped to get FFXIII into the line of sight of the non-gamer is debatable. We won’t know whether any of this has helped until NPD drops some math.

Furthermore, the advertising campaign could lead to a negative backlash. Its been widely reported that even with the multiple hours of handholding, FFXIII is a very difficult title. Definitely not the kind most would reccomend to some one completely new to the franchise.

Still, with all the money SE has invested in the title, you really can’t blame them for advertising this thing as agressively as possible to as many people as possible.

Fot those interested, the interview with Sparks also covers topics including the popularity of Kingdom Hearts in the UK and the difficulty of translating the success of a Japanese developed title over to the western market.

Leona Lewis was the winner of season three of the UK reality series “The X-Factor”. Her debut album Spirit was released in 2007.  Lewis is contributing the theme song for the western release of Final Fantasy XIII. Called “My Hands” the song is taken from Lewis’ sophomore album Echo. Lewis also appeared in a promotional video for FFXIII as well. The original theme for the game is “Kimi ga Iru Kara”  performed by Sayuri Sugawara and written by composer Masashi Hamauzu.

Source: Interview with Larry Sparks (MCV)

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