#StarWars trailer sends fans into a frenzy online, crash ticketing websites

It’s finally here!

In the ultimate deployment of corporate synergy in this universe, after months of waiting, the full-length trailer for “Star Wars: Episode VII — The Force Awakens” was shown on Disney-owned ESPN’s Monday Night Football.

Shortly after the trailer’s debut, movie ticket websites selling pre-sale tickets for the Dec. 18 release buckled under the excitement. Fandango.com, MovieTickets.com and several theater chain websites went down or experienced slow speeds that frustrated fans eager to hand them their money.

MovieTickets.com blamed a “high volume of traffic” to a person complaining on Twitter and told another person that — not surprisingly — “tons of tickets” are selling. Fandango appeared to ignore people’s complaints, forcing people to openly express their displeasure with the service:

With excitement this palpable, the trailer’s numbers on social media is quickly racking up colossal numbers. On Facebook, the trailer on Star War’s official account garnered 7.5 million views, 361,000 shares and 193,000 likes including a comment from Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg writing “This looks amazing. I love Star Wars.” So does everyone else, man.

The trailer on YouTube garnered 9.7 million views with the number of thumbs up towering over the amount of thumbs down, 206,000 versus 3,100, respectively. On Twitter, where the social network gave hashtags relating to the movie its own special “hashflags,” a tweet embedded with the trailer collected 50,000 retweets.

The positive sentiment on Twitter, YouTube and Facebook comments mirror that of data from social media analytics firm Brandwatch, which shows 75 percent of mentions are positive. Of the 90,000 tweets mentioning Star Wars over the past week, 79,000 occurred last night.

“People were commenting from everything from the music featured in the trailer to the weapons and gadgets they saw in the brief glimpse,” notes Brandwatch analyst Kellan Terry.

The top two trending hashtags on Twitter were #TheForceAwakens and #StarWars, with the former being used 12,100 times and the latter being used 11,200 times. Combined, both hashtags collected a massive 642 million impressions.

Thankfully, those hashtags overshadowed the racist hashtag #BoycottStarWarsVII, created by two trolls angry about the film’s diverse cast. Once the pair got it trending, the conversation surrounding it wasn’t used to support their racist causes, but Vox figures roughly “95 percent of those using it are talking about how ridiculous and disgusting the hashtag is, or retweet-shaming actual racist tweets.”

And it wouldn’t truly be a social media phenomenon with out the requisite #brand tweets that followed:

For the haters of Star Wars out there, there’s two more months of this so may the strength be with you.


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