: ‘Barbie’ was the rare original-film summer blockbuster. It will not reverse the franchise flood.

by | Oct 11, 2023 | Stock Market

“Barbie” racked up superlatives and was the unlikely original film to dominate the box office this summer. But as film studios and advertisers search for takeaways and Hollywood writers get back to work, analysts say the film’s success will be hard to repeat and is unlikely to stop the deluge of franchise movies, remakes and sequels. They note the obvious: Franchise films make a lot of money, even amid signs of superhero-film exhaustion. Original films not tied to 60-plus-year-old iconic toys probably won’t get the same marketing push as “Barbie” did. And mixing big budgets with indie filmmakers, whose willingness to take more risks might help reinvent older ideas, hasn’t always been successful.

And even as summer-season offerings from the “Indiana Jones” and “Mission: Impossible” universes couldn’t keep pace with “Barbie” and “Oppenheimer,” analysts noted that although franchise films are often eclipsed by overblown expectations, viewers are still pretty open to the industry’s efforts to reinterpret aging stories. “I don’t think there’s an inherent bias by audiences against sequels or franchises,” said Paul Dergarabedian, a senior media analyst for Comscore. “I think it’s bad-movie fatigue.” The success of “Barbie” and “Oppen …

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