A media franchise, also known as multimedia franchise, is a collection of related media in which several derivative works have been produced from an original creative work of fiction, such as a film, a work of literature, a television program or a video game. The intellectual property from the work can be licensed to other parties or partners for further derivative works and commercial exploitation across a range of media and by a variety of industries for merchandising purposes.
A media franchise often consists of cross-marketing across more than one medium. For the owners, the goal of increasing profit through diversity can extend the commercial profitability of the franchise and create strong feelings of identity and ownership in its consumers (fandom). Aarseth describes the financial logic of cost-recovery for expensive productions by identifying that a single medium launch is a lost opportunity, the timeliness of the production and release is more important than its integrity, the releases should raise brand awareness and the cross-ability of the work is critical for its success. American Idol was a transmedia franchise from its beginnings, with the first season winner Kelly Clarkson signing with RCA Records and having the release of A Moment Like This becoming a #1 hit on Billboard Hot 100. The success resulted in a nationwide concert tour, an American Idol book that made the bestseller list and the film From Justin to Kelly. A transmedia franchise however is often referred to by the simpler term "media franchise." The term media franchise is often used to describe the popular adaptation of a work into films, like the popular Twilight book series that was adapted into the five films of The Twilight Saga. Other neologisms exist to describe various franchise types including metaseries, which can be used to describe works such as Isaac Asimov's Foundation series.
Multimedia franchises usually develop through a character or fictional world becoming popular in one medium, and then expanding to others through licensing agreements, with respect to intellectual property in the franchise's characters and settings. As one author explains, "[f]or the studios, a home-run is a film from which a multimedia 'franchise' can be generated; the colossally expensive creation of cross-media conglomerates predicated on synergistic rewards provides an obvious imperative to develop such products." The trend later developed wherein franchises would be launched in multiple forms of media simultaneously:
"In one of the most celebrated ventures in media convergence, Larry and Andy Wachowski, creators of The Matrix trilogy, produced the game Enter the Matrix (2003) simultaneously with the last two films of the trilogy, shooting scenes for the game on the movie's sets with the movie's actors, and releasing the game on the same day as The Matrix Reloaded. Likewise, on September 21, 2004, Lucasfilm jointly released a new DVD box set of the original Star Wars trilogy with Star Wars: Battlefront, a combat game in which players can reenact battles from all six Star Wars films. In 2005, Peter Jackson likewise produced his blockbuster film King Kong (2005) in tandem with a successful King Kong game designed by Michel Ancel and published by Ubisoft. In the last several years, numerous licensed videogame adaptations of major summer and holiday blockbusters were released a few days before or a few days after their respective films, including: all three Star Wars films (1999–2005); all five Harry Potter films (2001–2008); all three Spider-Man films (2002–2007); Hulk (2003); The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002); The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003); The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe (2005); Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest (2006); Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End (2007); and Transformers (2007). These multimedia franchises have made it more difficult to distinguish the production of films and videogames as separate enterprises"— Harry Brown, Videogames and Education.
Long-running film franchises were common in the early studio era, when Hollywood studios had actors and directors under long-term contract. Examples include Andy Hardy, Ma and Pa Kettle, Bulldog Drummond, Superman, Tarzan, and Batman. The longest-running modern film franchises include James Bond, Godzilla, Friday the 13th, A Nightmare on Elm Street, and Star Trek. In such cases, even lead actors are often replaced as they age, lose interest, or their characters are killed.
Media franchises tend to cross over from their original media to other forms. Literary franchises are often transported to film, such as Nancy Drew, Miss Marple, and other popular detectives, as well as popular comic book superheroes. Television and film franchises are often expanded upon in novels, particularly those in the fantasy and science fiction genres, such as The Twilight Zone, Star Trek, Doctor Who and Star Wars. Similarly, fantasy, science fiction films and television shows are frequently adapted into animated television series, video games, or both.
A media franchise does not have to include the same characters or theme, as the brand identity can be the franchise, like Square Enix's Final Fantasy or the National Lampoon series, and can suffer from critical failures even if the media fictional material is unrelated.
Non-fiction literary franchises include the ...For Dummies and The Complete Idiot's Guide to... reference books. An enduring and extensive example of a media franchise is Playboy Enterprises, which began expanding well beyond its successful magazine, Playboy, within a few years after its first publication, into such enterprises as a modeling agency, several television shows (Playboy's Penthouse, in 1959), and even its own television channel. Twenty-five years later, Playboy released private clubs and restaurants, movie theaters, a radio show, direct to video films, music and book publishing (including original works in addition to its anthologies of cartoons, photographs, recipes, advice, articles or fiction that had originally appeared in the magazine), footwear, clothing of every kind, jewelry, housewares (lamps, clocks, bedding, glassware), guitars and gambling, playing cards, pinball machines and pet accessories, billiard balls, bedroom appurtenances, enhancements, plus countless other items of merchandise.
Babylon 5 is an American space opera television series created by writer and producer J. Michael Straczynski, under the Babylonian Productions label in association with Straczynski’s Synthetic Worlds Ltd. and Warner Bros. Domestic Television. After the successful airing of a backdoor pilot movie, Warner Bros. commissioned the series as part of the second year schedule of programs provided by its Prime Time Entertainment Network (PTEN). It premiered in the United States on January 26, 1994 and ran for the intended five seasons. Describing it as having "always been conceived as, fundamentally, a five year story, a novel for television", Straczynski wrote 92 of the 110 episodes and served as executive producer, along with Douglas Netter.Set between the years 2257 and 2262, it depicts a future where Earth has sovereign states and a unifying Earthgov. Colonies within the solar system, and beyond, make up the Earth Alliance and contact has been made with numerous spacefaring races. The ensemble cast portray alien ambassadorial staff and humans assigned to the five mile long Babylon 5 space station, a centre for trade and diplomacy. Described as "one of the most complex programs on television" the various story arcs drew upon the prophesies, religious zealotry, racial tensions, social pressures and political rivalries which existed within each of their cultures, to create a contextual frame for the motivations and consequences of the protagonists actions. With a strong emphasis on character development set against a backdrop of conflicting ideologies on multiple levels, Straczynski wanted "to take an adult approach to SF, and attempt to do for television SF what HILL STREET BLUES did for cop shows."Barbie
Barbie is a fashion doll manufactured by the American toy company Mattel, Inc. and launched in March 1959. American businesswoman Ruth Handler is credited with the creation of the doll using a German doll called Bild Lilli as her inspiration.
Barbie is the figurehead of a brand of Mattel dolls and accessories, including other family members and collectible dolls. Barbie has been an important part of the toy fashion doll market for over fifty years, and has been the subject of numerous controversies and lawsuits, often involving parodies of the doll and her lifestyle.
Mattel has sold over a billion Barbie dolls, making it the company's largest and most profitable line. However, sales have declined sharply since 2014. The doll transformed the toy business in affluent communities worldwide by becoming a vehicle for the sale of related merchandise (accessories, clothes, friends of Barbie, etc.). She had a significant impact on social values by conveying characteristics of female independence, and with her multitude of accessories, an idealized upscale life-style that can be shared with affluent friends. Starting in 1987, Barbie has expanded into a media franchise, including animated films, television specials, video games, and music.Bleach (disambiguation)
Bleach is a chemical that removes color or whitens.
Bleach may also refer to:
Bleach (American band), an American Christian rock group
Bleach (American band Bleach album), their third album
Bleach (British band), a British shoegazing group active in the early 1990s
Bleach (Japanese band), a Japanese all-girl punk group, known as Bleach03 in North America
Bleach (Japanese band Bleach album), 2003
Bleach (Nirvana album), a 1989 album by Nirvana
"Bleach", a song by Easyworld from This Is Where I Stand
"Bleach", a song by Brockhampton from Saturation III
Bleach (manga), a Japanese comic and media franchise
Bleach (TV series), the anime adaptation of the manga
Any of a number of video games based on the manga and anime
Bleach (2018 film), a live-action film based on the manga
Bleach (1998 film), a 1998 science-fiction short film
Bleach, a 2002 film starring Adam ScottBushiroad
Bushiroad Inc. (ブシロード, Bushirōdo) is a Japanese producer of collectible card games and trading cards, which was founded in 2007 by Takaaki Kidani and is headquartered in Tokyo. Bushiroad created and owns the media franchise Tantei Opera Milky Holmes.
On January 29, 2012, Bushiroad announced that it had fully acquired New Japan Pro-Wrestling, a major professional wrestling promotion, for ¥500 million.At the 2012 Tokyo Game Show, Bushiroad announced Bushimo, a new social gaming platform for smartphones, which was released in Winter 2012.
In March 2013, Bushiroad announced the revival of the media franchise Neppu Kairiku Bushi Road, with an anime television that aired on December 31, 2013 as a collaboration between Bushiroad, Bandai Visual, Nitroplus, and Kinema Citrus.Bushiroad introduced a monthly magazine in September 2013 titled Monthly Bushiroad (月刊ブシロード, Gekkan Bushirōdo). It features manga serializations of their various trading card games and other franchises.
Bushiroad created the media franchise BanG Dream! in January 2015, which consists of a musical group, several manga series and an anime television series. It also created the media franchise Shōjo Kageki Revue Starlight in 2017, which consists of a musical and an anime television series.Expanded universe
The term expanded universe, sometimes called an extended universe, is generally used to denote the "extension" of a media franchise (like a television program or a series of feature films) with other media, generally comics and original novels. This typically involves new stories for existing characters already developed within the franchise, but in some cases entirely new characters and complex mythology are developed. This is not necessarily the same as an adaptation, which is a retelling of the same story that may or may not adhere to accepted canon. Nearly every media franchise with a committed fan base has some form of expanded universe.Firefly (franchise)
The Firefly media franchise is an American space Western media franchise created by Joss Whedon and produced by Mutant Enemy Productions. The franchise includes the TV series Firefly, the film Serenity, and other media.List of G.I. Joe video games
Throughout the existence of the G.I. Joe media franchise, there have been several video games released.List of Transformers audio releases
This is a list of audio releases in the Transformers media franchise.Music of The Chronicles of Narnia films
The music of The Chronicles of Narnia film series was recorded and released in conjunction with the post-production and releases of each of the three corresponding films.Pirates of the Caribbean
Pirates of the Caribbean is a Disney franchise encompassing numerous theme park attractions and a media franchise consisting of a series of films, and spin-off novels, as well as a number of related video games and other media publications. The franchise originated with the Pirates of the Caribbean theme ride attraction, which opened at Disneyland in 1967 and was one of the last Disney theme park attractions overseen by Walt Disney. Disney based the ride on pirate legends and folklore.
Pirates of the Caribbean became a media franchise with the release of Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl in 2003. As of October 2016, Pirates of the Caribbean attractions can be found at five Disney theme parks. The films have grossed over $4.5 billion worldwide as of January 2018, putting the film franchise 12th in the list of all-time highest grossing franchises and film series.Rambo (franchise)
Rambo is an American franchise based on the David Morrell 1972 novel First Blood, about John Rambo, a troubled Vietnam War veteran and former U.S. Army Special Forces Soldier who is skilled in many aspects of survival, weaponry, hand-to-hand combat and guerrilla warfare.React (media franchise)
React (sometimes stylized in all caps as REACT) is a media franchise used by the Fine Brothers consisting of several online series centering on a group of individuals reacting to viral videos, trends, video games, film trailers, or music videos. React was also the first react channel on YouTube. The franchise was launched with the YouTube debut of Kids React in October 2010, and then grew to encompass four more series uploaded on the Fine Brothers' primary YouTube channel, a separate YouTube channel with various reaction-related content, as well as a television series titled React to That.
In 2016, the duo announced React World, a program and channel in which they would license the format of their React shows to creators, which led to widespread negative reception from viewers and fellow content creators, as well as confusion about what their format is. This eventually lead to the Fine Brothers to removing all videos related to React World, essentially pulling the plug on the React World program.TheForce.Net
TheForce.Net ("TFN") is a Star Wars news website that provides updates on the Star Wars media franchise. The web site launched in 1996 as the "Star Wars Site At Texas A & M." It was founded by Scott Chitwood and Darin Smith. TFN is officially "TheForce.Net, LLC," and is currently part-owned by Philip Wise, who also runs the Star Wars collecting news site Rebelscum.com.ThunderCats
ThunderCats is an American media franchise, featuring a fictional group of catlike humanoid aliens. The characters were created by Tobin "Ted" Wolf and originally featured in an animated television series named ThunderCats, running from 1985 to 1989, which was animated by Japanese studio Pacific Animation Corporation, and co produced by Rankin-Bass Animated Entertainment.Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six
Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six is a media franchise created by American author Tom Clancy about a fictional international counter-terrorist unit called "Rainbow". The franchise began with Clancy's novel Rainbow Six, which was adapted into a series of tactical first-person shooter video games.Wacky Races
Wacky Races is a media franchise containing four animated series, several video games, and a comic book, with most centered around the theme of various Hanna-Barbera cartoon characters primarily engaged in auto racing (although occasionally employing other means of transportation), usually in odd vehicles and with absurd plot developments.