Glen Powell and Sydney Sweeney leaned into off-screen romance rumors to get more eyes on their Anyone But You rom-com

Glen Powell admits he and Sydney Sweeney took full advantage of the rumors they were in a relationship to promote Anyone But You.

Anyone But You, Sydney Sweeney, Glen Powell, romance

There’s clever marketing, and then there’s Glen Powell and Sydney Sweeney’s ingenious strategy for drumming up more interest in their romantic comedy, Anyone But You, by leading the world into thinking they’re having an off-screen relationship. Speaking with The New York Times about the success of the couple’s comedic smash hit, which earned $219 million at the worldwide box office, Powell says he and Sweeney leaned into the rumors to bring attention to their film, and it worked like a charm.

“The two things that you have to sell a rom-com are fun and chemistry,” Powell told The New York Times. “Sydney and I have a ton of fun together, and we have a ton of effortless chemistry. That’s people wanting what’s on the screen off the screen, and sometimes you just have to lean into it a bit — and it worked wonderfully. Sydney is very smart.”

In Anyone but You, Sweeney and Powell’s characters hate each other so much they can’t help but fall for one another. The story unfolds in Sydney, Australia, and follows the couple as they experience a variety of vacation-related mishaps, including falling from boats and discovering spiders down their pants. Have you seen the spiders in Australia? Oh, the horror! Alexandra Shipp, GaTa, Dermot Mulroney, Rachel Griffiths, Michelle Hurd, Bryan Brown, Darren Barnet, and Hadley Robinson also star in the laugh-out-loud romantic comedy.

In addition to leading the film alongside Powell, Sweeney was also an executive producer. She attended every call about marketing the film and was unafraid to wake the team up at ungodly morning hours with ideas for better selling the movie to audiences. Once she realized audiences were making assumptions about her relationship with Powell – who’d broken up with his ex-girlfriend, Gigi Paris, shortly before filming began – the idea to lean into the speculation blossomed.

“I was in text group chats. I was probably keeping everybody over at Sony marketing and distribution awake at night because I couldn’t stop with ideas,” Sweeney told NYT. “I wanted to make sure that we were actively having a conversation with the audience as we were promoting this film, because at the end of the day, they’re the ones who created the entire narrative.”

In February, Glen Powell told Variety‘s Senior Culture and Events Editor Marc Malkin that he and Sweeney are teaming up for another project after the success of Anyone But You, saying, “When you find somebody that you really jive with, Sydney is so easy to work with and so fun. We’re definitely trying to find the next thing. Please send us all the scripts you got. You know we’re here for it. It’s been really wonderful to read a lot. Sydney reads everything, by the way, and in record time. She’s the fastest reader I think I’ve ever met. It takes me a little longer, but we’re reading everything and just trying to see what makes sense, what we can turn into something that audiences are going to respond to.”

What do you think of Powell and Sweeney’s clever plan to fake an off-screen romance to sell Anyone But You to more people? Let us know in the comments section below.

Source: The New York Times

About the Author

Born and raised in New York, then immigrated to Canada, Steve Seigh has been a editor, columnist, and critic since 2012. He started with Ink & Pixel, a column celebrating the magic and evolution of animation, before launching the companion YouTube series Animation Movies Revisited. He's also the host of the Talking Comics Podcast, a personality-driven audio show focusing on comic books, film, music, and more. You'll rarely catch him without headphones on his head and pancakes on his breath.