"Batman", Time Warner, and Franchise Filmmaking in the Conglomerate Era

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ProQuest, 2008 - 447 pages
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Spanning the nearly two decades since the Time Warner merger and the arrival of Batman in theaters, this study explains how media conglomeration affects the development of key properties by providing an extensive understanding of a film franchise. Beginning with Batman in 1989 and ending with Batman Begins in 2005, I argue that examining the Batman film franchise is one way to understand contemporary Hollywood. Through an integration of archival research, critical discourse analysis, and textual analysis, this study presents a comprehensive view of the Batman films by focusing on the development of this groundbreaking franchise, its impact on Time Warner, and what it tells us about the state of the contemporary film industry as a whole. Key issues of authorship, branding, and genre are integral aspects of the production of franchise films, and are essential themes that I discuss in this study. The story of the Batman franchise is not only about a multi-mediated property, but also a conglomerate's attempt to define itself within the increasingly competitive entertainment industry. By following the developments with the Batman franchise, Time Warner, and the film industry since 1989, this dissertation examines the conglomerate era and the place of the franchise film within it. Thus, I argue that the Batman franchise's arc provides the framework for understanding the changes which have occurred in the industry, particularly in regard to media conglomeration.
  

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Contents

List of Tables
1
The Top Five Films of Summer 2007
3
The Batman Films
16
Precedents to Media Conglomeration The Film Industry
54
Top Films of the Year 1975 1989
72
The Star Wars Trilogy
82
The Dirty Harry Films
84
The Elements React Synergistically Time Warner and
100
Top Ten AllTime Film Rentals as of January 1989
204
Authorship Auteurism and the Batman Franchise
248
Adapting the Property into a Film Franchise Collaborative
297
Film Adaptations of Comics302
302
Conclusion
355
The Franchise as Convergence
360
The Current State of Franchising and Conglomeration
365
Assessing the Role of Franchises
369

Major Studios and Independent LabelsDivision141
141
Rebuilding Time Warner A Franchise Powerhouse for
150
The Matrix Films
167
The Harry Potter Films
173
The Lord of the Rings Films175
175
The XMen Films
178
The SpiderMan Films
179
Top Ten Domestic Grossing Films for 2005
192
The Antithetical Combination Batman and The Rise of
203
Top 50 Films in Terms of Domestic Grosses
374
Posters of Batman LiveAction Feature Films 19891997 376 Appendix 3 Warner Bros Market Share and Top Films by Year 19701990
377
Warner Bros Market Share and Top Films by Year 19912005
379
Filmographies and Awards for Batman Directors
381
Images from Tim Burton Films
384
Images from Joel Schumacher Films
387
Images from Christopher Nolan Films
389
Visual References to Graphic Novels
391
Copyright

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