How Long Should a Studio Wait Before Rebooting a Franchise? Streaming
Over the course of the last two decades, we have seen franchises and characters go through more reboots than ever before.
Something that the film industry is keen on doing is rebooting popular franchises for new audiences. Studios hope that bringing back beloved franchises from the past will cause a surge in nostalgia and drive people to the movie theaters. Movie franchises from the '80s and '90s consistently get the reboot treatment because of this. Batman alone has gone through six different live-action iterations and there will probably be more in the future. Over the course of the last two decades, however, we have seen franchises and characters go through more reboots than we have before.
The first Spider-Man movie with Tobey Maguire came out in 2002 and his trilogy ended in 2007 with Spider-Man 3. Five years after Maguire's trilogy ended, The Amazing Spider-Man starring Andrew Garfield was released in 2012. His time as the web-slinging hero ended in 2014 with The Amazing Spider-Man 2 after it was bombed by critics. Only two years later were we reintroduced to Spidey a third time in 2016 when Tom Holland's version of the character debuted in Marvel Studios' Captain America: Civil War. There were three different iterations of the same character and the same franchise in the span of only 14 years.
That seems like too many reboots, right? Granted, each iteration of the Spider-Man franchise has garnered lifelong fans, but it has also been the subject of criticism for rebooting either too many times or too soon. The same criticisms apply to franchises such as James Bond or horror franchises such as Halloween. With as many fresh ideas that studios are able to churn out, there are probably double the amount of pitches to reboot an already-loved franchise. This begs the question; how long should studios wait before rebooting a franchise? There should be criteria for studios who want to re-imagine an original movie or franchise, and certainly for movies that have already been remade. Studios should probably wait a minimum of 20 years before re-starting a franchise again. Let's take a look at the reasons why they should wait:
While some rebooted franchises are able to offer a new take on the original work, a lot of reboots fall victim to repeating the same storylines and tropes we have seen before. With Batman, we have seen how Bruce Wayne's parents die multiple times. It is an important part of his character's backstory, but we have seen their death so many times now that it is basically general knowledge at this point. It does not necessarily need to be included in every new version of the franchise because of this. The same can be said for Uncle Ben's death for Spider-Man. Since audiences have already seen his death more than once, it's probably one of the reasons that Marvel Studio's decided to just scrap the character altogether. Uncle Ben is a character that means something to Spider-Man, but he doesn't have to be included to tell a great Spider-Man story, as seen in Tom Holland's trilogy.
This goes for franchises outside the superhero genre as well. The horror genre falls prey to this repetitiveness frequently. How many times have audiences watched Michael Myers relentlessly terrorize Haddonfield in pursuit of Laurie Strode? Or witnessed Leatherface hack someone up? Most of these reboots aren't received well by fans or critics because it offers nothing new to those franchises. If reboot after reboot is produced in relatively short periods of time, it is going to be nearly impossible to continue to come up with fresh ideas.
Allowing New Generations to Experience a Reboot They Can Relate To
Another downside to rebooting franchises too soon is that it doesn't leave enough room for new generations to become involved with the new story while appreciating the original story. If a franchise starts and is rebooted within the span of ten years, it is likely the same group of people watching both versions. There isn't anything wrong with that, but it doesn't allow for new fans to come in during the reboot and leave wanting to experience the original to appreciate the source material. Newstalksource
A franchise that went about rebooting the story in an intriguing way is the Scream franchise. No one else has ever played the iconic final girl Sidney Prescott other than Neve Campbell. She is what keeps every movie connected to one another, even as new characters and generations are introduced. When Paramount decided to give Scream the remake treatment 26 years after the first movie, they didn't go about it in the traditional way. They kept the same principal actors in their original roles instead of having them simply make a cameo. They also introduced an entirely new group of teenagers that weren't even born yet when the events of the original movie took place, but they kept those events canon in this new storyline. In doing so, they bridged the gap between generations and created a movie where both groups were working towards the same end goal. It was nostalgic for fans of the original and exciting for new fans to be part of this world while also having the story feel relatable to them. Megaseotable
When done right, remaking a movie can breathe new life into a franchise. It can completely revitalize a franchise and get fans excited to delve into that world again. Waiting long periods of time between reboots adds to the anticipation of waiting for the next variation of a well-known franchise. It allows the filmmakers more time to perfect the script while keeping fans on their toes. It adds a new level of excitement for fans who are eager to invest themselves in a movie franchise again.
Before he took over the task of directing the next installment of Star Wars movies, J.J. Abrams reinvigorated the Star Trek franchise. When the first movie of the rebooted trilogy came out in 2009, there were no Star Trek TV shows currently airing, and it had been decades since the original movies came out. He was able to create a remake that appealed to critics, audiences, and die-hard Star Trek fans by taking the time to get it right.
If studios and filmmakers rush to remake movies and reboot franchises in order to take advantage of their current popularity, they will disappoint themselves and moviegoers. It takes time and dedication to craft something that has sentimental value as well as new ideas. Rebooting a popular franchise three years later is not going to allow the filmmakers to bring anything new to the franchise, and it also does not give audiences any time to truly miss and appreciate their favorite franchises.
Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania is almost ready to open up Phase 5 of the MCU and take fans on a new dive into the dangers of the Quantum Realm. With the film being given the red carpet premiere treatment in Los Angeles on Monday, word has now been released about how many post-credit scenes the movie will have. Like many other MCU movies, it seems that Quantumania will deliver two stingers at the end of the movie, one mid-credits and one post-credits for those willing to stick it out through several minutes of cast and crew names.
The first Marvel movie of 2023 is expected to be one of the biggest MCU releases of the last three years, which is quite curious considering the previous Ant-Man movies have been regarded as something of a breather among more dramatic installments of the franchise. This time around though, the stakes are higher, the multiverse is expanding, and Kang the Conqueror is ready to step up and make a claim on the Marvel universe. With the movie expected to have an impact on many upcoming MCU films and shows, the question is which upcoming movies the post credits scenes will actually link to.
While Marvel have a tendency to include one mid-credit scene that teases something to come, and a final scene that usually either is a bit of a throw-away moment or ties up a loose story thread, the level of threat in Quantumania may not lend itself to a jokey second post-credits scene, but that is something many will only find out when they see the movie in theaters across its opening weekend.
For many people, the devastating ending of Avengers: Infinity War, a film that essentially saw the villain win and the heroes defeated, was only beaten by the arrival of Avengers: Endgame a year later. While an Ant-Man movie doesn’t seem like it can compete in the same arena, Quantumania is being pitched as its own Endgame and the conclusion of the film is likely to set the scene for what is to come on the journey to Avengers: Secret Wars in 2026.
While this kind of claim has been made before, with Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness failing to quite meet the lofty expectations of fans who wanted to see more multiverse, more madness and just more of everything. One of the greatest challenges of Phase 4, which itself was more of a reflective phase than a progressive one, was matching the expectations set by Avengers: Endgame that every movie was going to continue to be bigger and more sprawling than the last. This clearly is something that wasn’t sustainable, and Phase 4 managed to drag over-hyped fan theories down a few notches. Now Phase 5 has nowhere to hide and Marvel Studios has to start once again building up interest, hype and investment of fans before attempting to make Avengers: Secret Wars challenge the movies at the top of the highest grossing movies of all-time list.