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The business of film
The business of film

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1.1 Where films come from

Good film ideas are not that easy to come up with. That’s one of the reasons that film projects are often adaptations of other material.

It can also be valuable for film projects to already have audience recognition from books or plays or the lives of well-known people. This is often referred to as a film project being ‘pre-branded’. One of the strongest ways a film can be pre-branded is if it is a sequel to a previously released film. Having a film based on a recognisable existing property is thought to reduce the risk in an uncertain business.

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Figure 2 The decline of original movies (Infographic based on GeekTyrant, 2014)

Some commentators feel that cinema is suffering from too many pre-branded feature films. They feel that there is a loss of creativity in many of the big budget films that are made nowadays. A number of observers have noted that more and more big budget high box office films are sequels, prequels or remakes. They argue that, though this may be OK in the short term, it means that movies may end up being less appealing to audiences in the long term.

What do you think? Do you think that too many sequels and remakes is a problem for the film industry? In the independent film sector, of course, remakes and sequels are less of an issue. However, independent producers also often feel that having a pre-branded project – based on a known book or the life of a known personality – will make film development and production finance easier to obtain.

You can find some further sources around these issues in the Further Reading section at the end of this week.