How to sell a film in which Danny Dyer plays a bi-curious sailor to the Great British public.

Saturday February 9th 2013

As British film distributors go, Revolver Entertainment is an unusual case. In its salad days, the company focused mainly on fringe releases — classy titles like Backyard Babes and Snoop Dogg’s Doggystyle XXX Filth that would pay the bills. Of late, they’ve broadened their scope to include high-profile festival films like Sleeping Beauty and Buck, the marketing campaigns for which have been misguided to say the least. To give you some idea of their schizophrenic brand identity, last year they distributed both Into the Abyss and Sket.

Throughout it all, they’ve remained perhaps the UK’s foremost purveyor of Danny Dyer, having released such Dyer vehicles as PimpBasementDeviation and Dead Man Running, as well as two editions of Danny Dyer’s Funniest Football Foul-Ups. In 2010, they acquired the DVD rights to another Dyer film, 2000’s Borstal Boy, adapted by playwright Peter Sheridan from Brendan Behan’s autobiographical novel of the same name.

The role marked a bit of a departure for Dyer, requiring him as it did to portray a sexually-confused teenage sailor, with an unrequited crush on Shawn Hatosy (the film’s eponymous borstal boy). Nonetheless, Revolver weren’t going to let homoerotic leanings stand in the way of DVD sales, and so, while Dyer spends most of the film looking like this…

… and the borstal of the title is more Dead Poets Society than Scum …

… this was the marketing angle they settled on:

Poor old Shawn Hatosy didn’t even make the cover.