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Bland Name Product / Film

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  • Coming to America lampshades it, as the owner of the fast-food restaurant McDowell's gripes about McDonald's trying to sue him over (what he feels are) trivial similarities.
    Cleo McDowell: Look... me and the McDonalds people got this little misunderstanding. See, they're McDonald's... I'm McDowell's. They got the Golden Arches, mine is the Golden Arcs. They got the Big Mac, I got the Big Mick. We both got two all-beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles and onions, but their buns have sesame seeds. My buns have no seeds.
    • Ironically the movie was shot in a converted Wendy's. Later, it is shown that Cleo has a McDonalds operations manual in his possession, which he quickly puts away.
  • In Idiocracy, Brawndo is largely a stand-in for Gatorade. The main character, who's from the present day, even mentions that it "tastes just like Gatorade". In a bizarre twist, Brawndo became a drink in Real Life — and is a citrus-flavored energy drink, like Monster and Amp, rather than a sports drink like Gatorade. Legend has it they wanted to use Gatorade, but Gatorade refused. Several other real companies agreed to allow their names to be used, even though they were used in a disrespectful way (Fuddruckers, Costco, Starbucks, Carl's Jr.).
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  • In Steps Trodden Black, Alex buys energy drinks which are named Hurricane Handjob and Cocaine Tears.
  • In the Evil Dead films, Ash works at the local S-Mart, an obvious stand-in for K-Mart. The store's snappy catchphrase "Shop Smart! Shop S-Mart!" kind of makes you wonder why no real-life retailers ever thought to use the name for themselves.
  • The energy drink "Minotaur" in Role Models is clearly intended as a stand-in for Red Bull.
  • In the Wayne's World films, ubiquitous Canadian restaurant Tim Horton's Donuts becomes the film's fictional Stan Mikita's Donuts. Horton and Mikita are both Hockey Hall-of-famers. Actor-writer Mike Myers grew up in Scarborough ("Scarberia"), a suburb of Toronto, where Horton played; character Wayne Campbell lived in Aurora, outside Chicago, where Mikita played his entire NHL career.
  • Disaster Movie shows screenshots of sites named "FaceNook" and "uPay". Which are then promptly referred to in dialogue as Facebook and eBay. Apparently the owners of those sites didn't give Seltzer and Friedberg as much money as Apple did.
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  • Tapeheads has RVTV (Rock Video TV), a thinly-veiled stand-in for MTV, who wouldn't let the filmmakers use their name.
  • The Left Behind film series has Buck Williams working for Global News Network (GNN).
  • Undercover Brother.
    • When General Boutwell sets up a chain of fried chicken restaurants, he calls it GFC, General's Fried Chicken (AKA KFC/Kentucky Fried Chicken).
    • Penelope Snow and Antoine Jackson go shopping at Khaki Republic, which was based on Banana Republic.
  • Airplane! does this with a flashback involving Supperware, an ersatz of Tupperware. Also the name of the airline, Trans America Airlines, is a stand-in for Trans World Airlines.
  • On Babel 13 in Star Wreck: In the Pirkinning, there are advertising posters for "Baaburger" (Hesburger, featured itself at the beginning of Pirk's flashback) and "Baabsolut Vodka" (Absolut Vodka). Justified by Babel 13 being located in a parallel universe.
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  • Most appearances of the UNIX operating system in movies from The '80s and The '90s, like The Net. It will usually appear as UN*X when mentioned. This is at least partly Truth in Television. Companies that developed proprietary versions used names like Ultrix (Digital), IRIX (Silicon Graphics), AIX (IBM), etc. (partly because UNIX is a registered trademark and partly for branding reasons) and the standard convention when one wanted to refer to things-similar-to-but-not-exactly UNIX was to represent it as "Un*x".
  • In many movies, Time magazine has appeared as "Tempo" (e.g., Death Wish).
  • Fireproof has a Honeycomb cereal box altered to read "Coney-Bomb."
  • Liberal Arts does this in the Twilight books. Although it wasn't mentioned by name, the "vampire book" that sparks an argument between the two main characters is based on the book series' second installment and is titled "Lunar Moon" (based on Twilight's New Moon). This is likely done to avoid a Celebrity Paradox with cast member Elizabeth Reaser, who also plays Esme Cullen in the Twilight movies.
  • Most of the video games shown or mentioned in Angry Video Game Nerd The Movie are bland-name products of real games. This includes E.T., a major focal point of the story, which is now spelled "Eee Tee". The movie also features "YouPooed" as a stand-in for YouTube. However, Rolling Rock, the Nerd's signature beer brand, is surprisingly unchanged.
  • The Made-for-TV Movie Without Warning (1994) consists of a Phony Newscast on an unnamed network with a logo that vaguely resembles the CBS "eye". Notable in that this was not done to avoid trademark infringement—the movie appeared on CBS, which would naturally have the rights to its own logo—but to provide a subtle hint to the audience that what they were watching was fictional.
  • The Kentucky Fried Movie had many examples, including Willer (Miller) Beer, Barker (Parker) Brothers, "Feel-a-Round" (Sensurround), Nytex P.M. (Nyquil P.M.) and Nesson Oil (Wesson Oil).
  • In Kingsman: The Secret Service, Valentine's glasses have an extra plastic piece above his right eye. Although no attention is drawn to it, it strongly resembles a Google Glass.
  • In Home Alone, the McCallisters have pizza delivered from "Little Nero's" instead of Little Caesar's. This actually had a brief Red Stapler moment when, on November 6, 2015, UberEATS ran a promotion allowing fans to order pizza from local restaurants but delivered them in Little Nero's boxes by drivers wearing Little Nero's hats.
  • In Ex Machina, Blue Book is pretty much Google in all but name. It even sounds like "Google" when they say it quickly.
  • In The Pact, Google is replaced by Global, complete with the now-outdated serif-font logo.
  • In Buffalo '66, the many items of memorabilia shown relating to the Queen City's NFL team use the word "Buffalo" where you would expect to see the Bills' logo.
  • Bob & Carol & Ted & Alice: Bob and Carol visit a hippy-dippy New Age therapy retreat that is obviously supposed to be the Esalen Institute. But the producers apparently didn't want to pay the folks at Esalen, so it's only called "the Institute".
  • In Four Lions, terrorists covertly communicate online by joining a children's MMORPG called Puffin Party, which is clearly inspired by Club Penguin.


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