Surprise! Sydney Sweeney & Glen Powell’s Romance Rumors Were a Marketing Ploy

No one is really surprised by this admission but I'm personally surprised by how open they're being about how easily they pulled one over on everyone.

Surprise! Sydney Sweeney & Glen Powell’s Romance Rumors Were a Marketing Ploy

Last summer, the internet was rocked by rumors of mutual infidelity between co-stars Sydney Sweeney and Glen Powell, all before we even knew the name of their rom-com, Anyone But You. Cozy videos and steamy on-set photos of the two, who were both in relationships, further fueled this narrative, as did Powell’s break-up from his long-time girlfriend a few months before the movie premiered. In hindsight, it was all a little too on the nose, so it probably won’t shock you to learn that it was all an elaborate ruse!

In a New York Times interview this week, Powell and Sweeney talked about wielding real-life flirtation to sell tickets and promote the movie. Gasp!

“The two things that you have to sell a rom-com are fun and chemistry,” Powell told the 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.”

Sweeney, an executive producer for the movie, went as far as to say that she was “on every call” with the marketing department. “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,” she said.

Again, I am hardly surprised that their choice to play up their alleged off-screen romance was a publicity stunt, but I am a little surprised by how open they’re being about how easily they pulled one over on everyone. Those tricky minxes…

Throughout Anyone But You‘s theatrical run, Sweeney—who remains engaged to producer Jonathan Davino—shared fan videos about her rumored relationship with Powell. In 2023, Powell literally described making the movie with Sweeney as “[feeling] like a rom-com in itself,” called Sweeney “very easy to pretend to fall in love with,” and said that when filming a rom-com it’s “harder to differentiate between real life and fake life.”

Anyone But You wound up grossing about $219 million at the box office, so, mission accomplished for these two! I will say, even as their comments about their little marketing strategy are getting a lot of attention right now, they hardly invented the playbook of a fake (?) romance with your co-star to sell tickets. Where were you guys during Bradley Cooper and Lady GaGa’s A Star Is Born press run in 2018??? And then, of course, there are all the co-stars who actually started dating, from Zendaya and Tom Holland to Emma Stone and Andrew Garfield to Tobey Maguire and Kirsten Dunst, and… I realize I’m just naming off every Spider-Man couple.

To Sweeney’s point, making the audience feel involved—ie. by blurring real life from the film—is clearly a highly effective marketing play, so, to any co-stars looking for an excuse to make out, consider this it!

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