Fan Based or Marketing Ploy?


The movie poster for Mockingjay: Part 1.

Valerie Pham, Photojournalist

A recent phenomenon in Hollywood blockbusters has been to split up a franchise’s finale into two parts. The origin of this trend started when Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1 was released into theaters on November 19th, 2010. The reasons behind this decision by Warner Brothers Studios were to stay true to the 759 page novel and to be able to spread information out, rather than cramming it onto one film. This decision has been referred to as financially ingenious by marketing experts because the box office profits were thought to be quadrupled. The movie ended up not being as successful as the previous films but it still made a major profit.


In response to fans demanding that specific events be incorporated into the movie adaptations of their favorite books, a solution was proposed. The division of one film into two helps a movie stay true the book. Although the original reason for this was to satisfy the fans, as more series come out with two parts, the reason behind it became questionable. Fans wondered if the movies were meant to satisfy them or rather to maximize the box office profits.


These lucrative installments became controversial when novels such as Mockingjay were announced to release in two different parts because there were only 390 pages in the book as opposed to the 759 pages of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. The justification for the splitting of these franchise finales was to entertain the fans, but the assumed reason is for the marketing aspect.


Fans of the book series has differing opinions. Some enjoy the splitting of the finales into two parts and some dislike it. Six out of the ten Yorba Linda High School students asked like the two separate films and the other four dislike it. Hannah Flink (10) stated that, “I like it because there is a better chance that it will be closer to the book. Since the movie is longer if it has two parts, more things can be included.” Cat Baugh (11) stated that, “I like how there are two parts of the movies because it makes the movies longer, so I have more of it to watch.” The different opinions may have to do with whether the person has read the books or not. Lexi Frausto (9) who hasn’t read the novels said, “I like it! It keeps us wanting more.” While Anna Hanna (10), who has real the trilogy stated that, “I don’t like how there are two parts because even though the movies are more similar to the books, I have to wait another year to watch the second half, even though I already know what is going to happen.” As a result most fans are left satisfied with the films and studios make more money.