Bruce Willis a great sport in Second Life

Last Friday evening’s Die Hard 4 virtual press conference and expo launch in Second Life was a great example of how this virtual medium can work well when you have some real imagination and execute a good plan of organization.

The event featured a live Q&A session with Bruce Willis, the star of the film. As with the 300 movie event in Second Life in March, this event featured a moderator who fielded text questions from the assembled journalists, bloggers and contest winners (yes, there had been a contest for Die Hard fans to win a place at this virtual launch and ‘meet’ Bruce). The answers came in the spoken word from Bruce Willis via a real-time audio stream.

Die Hard 4 virtual press event

This was the scene about half an hour before Bruce Willis’ avatar arrived and things kicked off. I reckon there were about 60 people there, close to the capacity limit of a Second Life sim.

Judging from the text chat scrolling up the screen, they came from all over the world, from North America, South America, Europe, Japan and other points east.

The interest of people to be there was really interesting. Clicking on people’s profiles, I found few showing recent Second Life sign-up, ie, most I saw had been resident for some months at least. A very different picture to the 300 event where the majority of journalists who participated had signed up for the first time literally that day or, at most, a few days prior.

Once Bruce Willis arrived, the floodgate opened on questions. He was a terrific sport, answering questions and talking for well over 45 minutes.

During the Q&A session, I twittered a bit (actually, twitku’d would be a better word) including some instant quick posts on some of the things Willis said:

At the Die Hard 4 press conference in Second Life. Bruce is late! 01:32 AM June 02, 2007  from web
Lot of avatars here, i reckons about 60. Many nationalities. But still no Bruce. 01:35 AM June 02, 2007  from web
Yay! Bruce Willis finally arrived! 01:41 AM June 02, 2007
Questions for Bruce Willis coming faster and faster. Lots of them. 01:46 AM June 02, 2007  from web
Bruce sounds knackered. Must be that 5-week press tour he wasn’t looking forward to. 01:51 AM June 02, 2007  from web
Bruce: “Version 2.0 of Holly McClane in Lucy McClane” in DH4. 01:55 AM June 02, 2007  from web
Bruce: “This is a very cool way to interact with my fans.” 01:58 AM June 02, 2007  from web
Bruce: “Everything has become entertainment including the news.” 02:00 AM June 02, 2007  from web
Q: If you could be one movie hero who would it be? Bruce answers: Steve McQueen. 02:05 AM June 02, 2007  from web
Q: Are you a Mac or a PC? Bruce answers: A Mac. 02:13 AM June 02, 2007  from web
DH4 press conference in SL just concluded. Very neat. Bruce Willis was great. 02:17 AM June 02, 2007  from web

I grabbed quite a few screenshots during the briefing, as well as some scenes from around the excellent Die Hard 4 Expo that had been created and which opened at Silverscreen on Friday. The pics are all up on Flickr.

I have seen few media reports or blog posts so far about Friday’s event, which surprises me a bit. But in any event, I think it was a great way to connect Bruce Willis and the new Die Hard movie with fans as well as mainstream media and interested social media types.

Kudos to Dan Light and the team at The PPC for imagining it all!

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