Hello, Bloggers, welcome to another episode of Topic Of The Day. Whenever an actor signs on to a big franchise or a film that becomes a franchise, it can serve as both a blessing and a curse. A blessing because of the fat paycheck and career exposure, but also a curse because some actors have difficulty drawing in audiences without the cape on or without their star-making franchise. So I have some tips for anyone that signs on to a franchise so that it can be more of a blessing. Let's take a look:
After you finish wrapping one film, before you work on the potential sequel, keep a little busy before the sequel starts shooting and tackle different genres to give your career some life outside of your franchise so that your most famous character isn't the only one audiences are familiar with and you can widen your audience. Take for example, Christian Bale. Over the course of his time as Batman, he worked with directors like Werner Herzog, Terrence Malick, and David O. Russell. Of course, he also won an Oscar for his work in The Fighter. You also have Scarlett Johansson who, over the course of her time as Black Widow, has landed serious artistic cred with Don Jon, Her, and Under The Skin while landing the lead in Ghost in the Shell thanks to her box office success with Lucy. Even Chris Hemsworth has been trying to build a career outside of Thor by dabbling into comedy with both Vacation and the upcoming Ghostbusters reboot. Plus, he has worked with the likes of Michael Mann and Ron Howard. So I would work with prestigious directors and tackle various genres (comedy, horror, indie dramas, etc.) So that it doesn't feel as if you're resting on your Marvel or Jedi laurels in between movies.
By exploring other genres and forming relationships with great directors, that way, when a sequel rolls around in your own franchise and doesn't do as hot as the previous installments, you'll have a potential safety net. But if the latest installment doesn't do very hot and there is no demand for another one, then it would be a sign to walk away. Then, you would probably end up coasting through a big payday in a sequel that nobody even wanted. Don't be like Bruce Willis. But if the latest installment doesn't do particularly well and there slowly starts to be interest in another sequel, then if you are game, then by all means, come back. If audiences see that you still enjoy playing the character that made you a star, then they might run out and see you. As I have mentioned in my Topic Of The Day on the art of phoning it in, audiences still run out and see Hugh Jackman as Wolverine because he is game every time he plays the character.
So overall, while I am not an agent, my advice to any actor that tackles a franchise property, whether it'd be a superhero franchise, something along the lines of Star Wars or Lord of the Rings, or an original film that becomes a franchise, is to keep busy in between films and tackle different types of films while potentially forming relationships with great directors. Also, if the latest installment in your franchise doesn't do very well, then walk away until there starts to be interest in another sequel as the years go by. If that does happen, then you should come back so that audiences see that you still enjoy playing the character that made you beloved by audiences even as you have built a career outside of it. You can have your cake and eat it too.
Whether you agree or disagree with my thoughts, please feel free to write your thoughts in the comments section and offer up your own tips to any actor looking to sign on to a franchise property. Thanks for reading!