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Who ever dreamed that Denny’s Restaurants and The Hobbit would pair up? Well, our earth, just like Middle Earth is full of surprises! Here’s the plot....

As everybody knows,  The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, the first of a trilogy of long awaited prequels to Academy Award winner Peter Jackson’s cult fantasy classic, Lord of The Rings  is premiering this December 14, 2012.  It’s an adaptation of J. R. R. Tolkein's  popular fantasy novel written in 1937.The HobbitThe film follows the adventures of a young hobbit named Bilbo Baggins who travels to the Lonely Mountain with his friends, a group of dwarves, to reclaim a treasure stolen from them by a dragon named Smaug (Benedict Cumberbatch). Returning are many of our favorites actors from the previous fims, including Ian McKellen as Gandalf the Grey and Andy Serkis as Gollum. Also staring is Martin Freeman as a young Bilbo Baggins, Ian Holmes as an old Bilbo Baggins, Richard Armitage as Tahorin Oakenshield.

Meanwhile, enter Denny’s Restaurants into the picture, who have created a special Hobbit-themed menu to celebrate the film’s debut. Beginning November 6, fun Hobbit movie themed meals will be hot off the griddle at everyone’s favorite diner, Denny’s.

Hobbit Hole BreakfastThe Hobbit menu will be offered for a limited time and hungry customers will be able to partake in these precious meals like the Build Your Own Hobbit Slam, Hobbit Hole Breakfast, Frodo's Pot Roast Skillet, Shire Sausage and Pumpkin Patch Pancakes, Bilbo’s Berry Smoothie, Gandalf’s Gobble Melt, Radagast’s Red Velvet Pancake Puppies, and the Ring Burger. (We bet you’ll be returning more than once!)

Frances Allen, chief marketing officer of Denny's, said, "We were inspired by the imaginative world of Middle-earth and wanted to offer fellow fans an equally inspired food experience to share in the excitement and anticipation for the upcoming debut."

Shire Sausage SkilletWithin the last year, Denny’s has made it a point to connect more directly with their Millenial customers (people born sometime between 1970 to 2000) who tend to have a strong interest in the world of entertainment. Allen said that focusing on this group is important because they are typically late-night diners and that, “Our Millenials are our customers of the future... They are fully connected and get most of their information on the web and expect their brands to speak to them.”

Red Velvet Pancake PuppiesAllen has made many changes since she got on board at Denny’s in August,  2011. Allen has spearheaded the creation of a series of webisodes or “dinersodes”  as she calls them, named “Always Open” to the brand’s website. In each segment, comedian David Koechner of Anchorman fame interviews celebrities such as Christina Applegate, Dax Shepard, Will Arnett, Jessica Biel and Sarah Silverman, all in a Denny’s Diner.

"The 'Always Open' series utilizes celebrities to draw attention to the kinds of dialog you'll overhear all the time at Denny's—sometimes funny, sometimes heartwarming, but always authentic,” Allen explains.

The Ring BurgerOne of the “dinersodes”   features a groovy booth dance party with SNL alum Maya Rudolph. In another, Kristen Bell reveals she had operatic training as a child and can still impressively carry a tune. The videos have attracted a lot of publicity and Allen pointed out that Denny’s started being mentioned a lot more on late night talk shows, showing that the extra marketing effort was paying off. Now Denny’s gets the privilege to partner with one of the biggest films of the year.

Lonely Mountain TreasureBut wait! There’s more! Every one of Denny's guests who orders from the special Hobbit menu will have exclusive access to a souvenir pack of 12 trading cards designed around the film. In addition to special Denny's coupons, 4 different QR codes will be located on Denny's placemats, which will include exclusive video content, online games and a behind the-scenes look at Denny's National TV Spot.

And here’s the best news yet! A ticket to the movie The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey AND selected items from Denny’s special Hobbit Menu can cost less than $20 per person. Now that’s cause for real excitement!
Hobbits climbing up the mountain
Denny’s will begin to serve their Hobbit-themed meals on November 6th (Election day! Don’t forget to vote!) To get a closer look at Denny's menu inspired by The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, go to www.dennys.com

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey will premiere in theaters on December 14th. The second film of the Hobbit trilogy, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, will be released December 13, 2013 and the final part of the trilogy, The Hobbit: There and Back Again, is planned for a release on July 18, 2014.

 

www.Dishmag.com / Issue 140 - September 9347
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