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Building Some Last-Minute Buzz for ‘Super 8′?

Anyone who watched the MTV Movie Awards on Sunday (or any of the countless re-airings) gasped a little when His Highness Steven Spielberg took the stage with writer/director J.J. Abrams and a couple of the young stars of his new film Super 8. The appearance, and the launch of the new trailer for the movie, was clearly intended to drum up some anticipation for the movie, which opens tomorrow.

They might want to do a lot more of this anticipation building. According to New York magazine’s Vulture blog, moviegoers aren’t clamoring to see Super 8.

NRG data shows that nearly two-thirds of people are unaware of the movie and only 36 percent showed “definite interest” in seeing it. The blog says Abrams, who kept people guessing with some of his other projects, like the TV show Lost and the film Cloverfield, may have been a little too quiet about this one. We’ll toss out there the possibility that all of the comparisons to E.T aren’t meaningful to those who weren’t around to be awed by it and are now used to 3D and CGI and all manner of high-tech effects. (I, on the other hand, saw that movie a dozen times when I was a kid. And cried every single time.)

The Huffington Post says that Paramount Pictures, the movie company behind Super 8, is “banking” on Abrams fans. How many of those are there?

Well, maybe they’re not entirely banking on that. Paramount had a promoted hashtag, #Super8Secret, that offered interested viewers a chance to see the movie today, with some theaters offering free popcorn. In other words, “we kept really quiet before, but we’d better get some WOM on this thing pronto.”

Vulture anticipates $30 million for Super 8 in its opening weekend. The AP says around the mid- $20 millions, which would put it in the same arena as the new X-Men movie, but that’s already been out for a week. It earned $56 million its opening weekend.

Just for kicks, we’ve also included the trailer for another summer movie below, Rise of the Planet of the Apes, because it’s sheer madness. Apes throwing sledgehammers in the street! Whatever happened to tossing a little poop at the zoo?

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