New Stranglehold videos, plus $25K short movie contest announced

Attention aspiring filmmakers who are also dirt poor: Midway wants your movie-making skills and they’re willing to pay for it. With John Woo Presents Stranglehold set to finally come out this summer, Midway has decided to hold a short film contest as a means of “cool” and “hip” marketing for the game.

Sure, it may be cheesy, but there’s nothing cheesy about a cool $25,000 in your pocket, now is there? Here are the details if you want to get involved:

CHICAGO, IL – April 24, 2007 – Midway Games Inc. (NYSE: MWY), a leading interactive entertainment publisher and developer today announced a groundbreaking video submission contest in association with John Woo and his video game production company, Tiger Hill Entertainment, Spike TV and Fox Interactive Media: Stranglehold’s  True to John Woo Short Film Contest. Hosted exclusively on MySpace (https://www.myspace.com/strangleholdgame), and promoted across other Fox Interactive Media properties including IGN Entertainment, this unique contest is scheduled to launch April 30th and encourages contestants to create the most authentic John Woo-style short film. Contest ends June 25, 2007. No purchase necessary.

The grand prize winner will receive $25,000, a trip for two to Midway’s Chicago studios to meet developers and tape an interview for Spike TV, the chance to personally premiere the short film on Spike TV, an authentic “Hard Boiled” movie poster autographed by John Woo, an Amp’d mobile phone with six months’ service, and a copy of Stranglehold.

Full contest details and more videos after the jump. 

Full press release:

$25,000 Grand Prize Winner to be Selected by Acclaimed Director John Woo and Planned to Premiere on Spike TV This Summer

CHICAGO, IL – April 24, 2007 – Midway Games Inc. (NYSE: MWY), a leading interactive entertainment publisher and developer today announced a groundbreaking video submission contest in association with John Woo and his video game production company, Tiger Hill Entertainment, Spike TV and Fox Interactive Media: Stranglehold’s True to John Woo Short Film Contest. Hosted exclusively on MySpace (https://www.myspace.com/strangleholdgame), and promoted across other Fox Interactive Media properties including IGN Entertainment, this unique contest is scheduled to launch April 30th and encourages contestants to create the most authentic John Woo-style short film. Contest ends June 25, 2007. No purchase necessary.

The grand prize winner will receive $25,000, a trip for two to Midway’s Chicago studios to meet developers and tape an interview for Spike TV, the chance to personally premiere the short film on Spike TV, an authentic “Hard Boiled” movie poster autographed by John Woo, an Amp’d mobile phone with six months’ service, and a copy of Stranglehold.*

“Stranglehold’s cinematic action is directly inspired by John Woo’s acclaimed action films and their unique style,” said Mona Hamilton, vice president of marketing, Midway Amusement Games, LLC. “We’ve created a premier collaboration with Spike TV and Fox Interactive Media’s MySpace and IGN Entertainment sites that gives fans the opportunity to put their creativity to the test with a short film judged by John Woo himself.”

“Young filmmakers need encouragement to grow; it is an aspect of my profession which I cherish deeply,” said action director John Woo. “I know the Stranglehold Short Film Contest will find new talent and with it, new possibilities.”

In addition to the premiere on Spike TV expected this summer, both the game release and short film winner will be a featured segment on “Game Head,” Spike TV’s weekly series dedicated to everything that is happening in the world of video games, giving viewers an uncompromised look at the culture of video games.

Additionally, the films of ten finalists are expected to be posted on MySpace, with user voting determining a second “audience choice” winner, who will receive prizes including $1000, an Amp’d mobile phone with six months’ service, an authentic “Hard Boiled” movie poster autographed by John Woo and a copy of Stranglehold.* Fans will also be able to learn more about the game, the contest and the art of John Woo’s filmmaking by visiting both the Stranglehold contest profile on MySpace, and an exclusive IGN micro site dedicated to the game (https://ign.com/stranglehold).

Entries to Stranglehold’s short film contest must be no longer than two minutes and thirty seconds in length and will be judged using three specific criteria:

    * Overall Quality – 40% – includes cinematography, editing, sound, image quality and technical production
    * Strength of John Woo Homage – 40% – includes extent of homage, quality of homage and use of Woo signature techniques
    * Creativity – 20% – includes screenplay, acting and overall impression

For more about Stranglehold’s short film contest, including official rules and regulations visit: https://www.myspace.com/strangleholdgame

* Stranglehold’s True to John Woo Video Contest prizes are subject to change.

About Stranglehold
A collaboration with world renowned action film director John Woo’s Tiger Hill Entertainment, Stranglehold allows players to experience the excitement of true next-gen action as you take on the role of Inspector Tequila created by John Woo for his influential action film, Hard Boiled starring Chow Yun-Fat. Ensnared by a crime boss with a gripping secret, Inspector Tequila is forced to cross the line from sworn duty to bloody revenge. Engage your enemies with intense cinematic gun battles and cause massive environmental damage in real-time or revolutionary slow-motion Tequila Time. Stranglehold is currently scheduled to ship Summer 2007. More information about Stranglehold can be found online at www.strangleholdgame.com

Robert Summa