In our modern age of franchised film production based on intellectual property, it is gradually becoming impossible to believe that any once popular name can become too toxic to be left alive. As the years go by, the box office returns to falling, and public opinion becomes more furious, the Wizarding world of Harry Potter and his friends are testing this theory.
At Warner Bros. Entertainment there are two giant empires that have conquered the world; Harry Potter and the DC Expanded Universe. The latter had a difficult few years when Zack Snyder directed the show, but his recovery has been gradual and powerful. Since the larger DCEU is in a slightly shaky position, it’s worth wondering if the Wizarding World and the big name associated with it is a charming blessing or a terrible curse.
In 1999, Warner Bros. acquired the film rights to the 1997 novel “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone” and its first three sequels for $ 1.65 million. In the first few years of the new millennium, every Harry Potter film was confidently among the top three best-selling films of the year of release. It is fundamentally impossible to overestimate the financial success of the Harry Potter film franchise and related products. For a decade, Warner Bros. has held in store a monstrous success with limited overhead and no threat of disappointment. For comparison, the Harry Potter film franchise is the fourth most financially successful intellectual property in the history of cinema, excluding profits from the sale of goods. Shared toys, games, clothing, etc. have raised over $15 billion, and they haven’t slowed down to any significant extent. The studio dreams of such an IP. A couple million dollars have been spent, more than $20 billion in profits without any signs of stopping. It is this kind of success that leads to complacency.
So, Warner Bros. there is a seemingly unkillable cash cow for eight films, the series ends as it should, and the studio remains without a beloved son. Maybe they could have turned to the DC Comics brand, but now we all know how it was. Half a decade passed before WB returned to the well, which is a truly stunning display of restraint, given the circumstances. Their first work, “Fantastic Beasts and Where they Live,” surpassed their own “Batman v Superman,” became one of the biggest hits of 2016 and became the fifth most successful film “Magical World.” A pretty good income, so they tried again, but radically reduced the success. “Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald” had the worst financial return and critical response among all the films in the franchise. However, he did not have to hold this title for long, because this year “Dumbledore’s Secrets” turned out to be even worse.
The “Magic World” franchise is sliding down and no longer has the same box office receipts. There are many reasons contributing to this reality, and very little can be done to eliminate them. Pure quality should play a role. Average or terrible reviews have dogged both recent films, ensuring that viewers who have never been ardent fans or who have left this habit will stay at home. The fact that the new franchise is not associated with most of the characters known to people is also a fairly significant factor reducing box office success. In addition, the modern audience has many other huge franchises fighting for their attention, which were not in the previous issue of the Harry Potter series.
So, revenues are shrinking, and the new series doesn’t have the legs of its predecessor, but the title “Magic World” will surely survive this, right? Just reduce your budget, go the Solo or Rogue One route with a few fan-service prequels, and pump out one a year to substantial but not groundbreaking success, right? Unfortunately for Warner Bros., people have started to turn away from their most profitable franchise for reasons completely beyond their control.
There is no way to measure public outrage other than monitoring social media or large-scale surveys, but a considerable portion of the audience boycotts the Wizarding World. J.K. Rowling’s controversial and regularly controversial public statements have greatly affected the financial viability of the series she wrote. Modern incarnations of the wizarding world should do their best to clarify that Rowling will not benefit from their success. Casual fans, viewers who have outgrown their obsession, and even some avid fans have been forced by their consciousness to move away from this once unstoppable franchise. It’s hard to believe, but among the many problems with the franchise’s narrative, the seemingly hostile behavior of the franchise creator can make the brand too toxic to survive.