Movies and money: the top film franchises

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OK Harry Potter fans: you love your hero (and friends) so much it’s very likely that you’ll push the Harry Potter ‘franchise’ up the Box Office rankings to the point where the movies’ total takings will rank as the 2nd biggest ever for any series.
So who is top?  And why does Hollywood put so much effort into their sequel productions?  Some good material in here for end of term quizzes…

According to the data and commentary in The Economist Hollywood has fallen for the franchise model because of the advantage of name recognition. It has also become keen on what the studios call “pre-sold” films—stories based on a book (like Harry Potter) or a toy (like Transformers). People familiar with these things can often be persuaded to sit in a dark room and eat popcorn for 90 minutes while they are brought to life on screen.

The whole Hollywood business model has had several criticisms thrown at it in recent years:
- Another business that doesn’t ‘get’ the internet
- Is cinema the most innovative part of the film business?
- Bankrupt Blockbuster - what went wrong?
- the cinema/DVD lifecycle

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