'Lars And The Real Girl' Embarks On Faith-Based Sex-Doll Initiative

With Lars and the Real Girl set to open in various markets over the next few weeks—it's the buzzed-about Ryan Gosling film about a lonely misfit deluded into thinking he's fallen in love with a mail-order silicone sex doll—producers are facing a marketing challenge: Sure, the concept alone might sell tickets to a built-in, RealDoll-enthusiast audience, who'll arrive opening night with high hopes of cheerleading costumes and raunchy, multi-doll orgies. But how to get the rest of America to warm to what is in actuality a mild and sweet-natured film about small town, churchgoing folk? One solution, employed by Hollywood in the past to varying degrees of success, is to target one's sex-doll movie directly to the Christians who'd most identify with its message of universal tolerance:

How do you market a wholesome, old-fashioned film about a churchgoer who falls in love with his sex doll? Grassroots screenings with religious groups, maybe?
SKE plans more than 100 promo screenings by the time the film goes wide including, yes, outreach to church leaders. "We've found an enormous response from mainstream Christian groups," says Ray. "Some pastors may discuss the film as part of their sermons."

There's nothing very prurient in the film, which earned a PG-13 for "some sex-related content." Lars and Bianca sleep in separate houses. There's a discreet bathing scene where Bianca's potential in-laws bathe her, but while some silicone is exposed, her anatomical correctness is never shown.

How every parish chooses to approach the delicate topic of Lars and his fully bendable companion is of course up to the discretion of the clergy. While a policy of honesty might seem the Christian way, they may find the movie's sensitive depiction of the Real Girl—modestly dressed, respectfully silent during sermons, and willing to stand for 4 hours at the bake sale table without taking even one bathroom break—might lead them to take up a collection for a Real Girl to call their own.