Only a few months have passed since the worldwide premiere of Avengers Endgame and already, Marvel Studios have brought folks round two with the recent re-release.
That’s right, in what was clearly a ploy to dethrone James Cameron’s Avatar from the top of the box office charts, Endgame was sent back to select theaters worldwide. And though it may not have made as much money as the studio no doubt hoped it would, it’s clear that a lot of people out there are still thirsty for another round with Earth’s Mightiest Heroes.
Besides, let’s face it, thanks to its epic storyline and cutting-edge visuals, Avengers: Endgame is truly the perfect film for theaters. It’s also the most satisfying – in every sense of the word – of all the MCU blockbusters, proving that no matter what Marvel does, the fans will almost always eat it up. But what, exactly, is it about these movies that folks love so much?
Well, a new study attempted to figure that out and it turns out, it has to do with the stories the studio tells, not the dazzling effects and over the top set pieces.
“At a deeper level, stories are so important for humans,” researcher Matthew Roughan told TechXplore. “It is fair to say, I think, that stories are what make us human; what differentiates us from the rest of the natural world. We would really like to make a contribution to understanding how and why that is so.”
Continuing on, he noted that what they found was that a bigger cast usually meant more money at the box office. Though it may not be that simple.
“The biggest surprise for us was that the effective cast size is correlated with the profitability of the movies, with a bigger role-call translating in bigger profits,” Roughan said. “However, you have to be very careful about such results. What we observe is only a correlation—we can’t get causation from that. We think the true reason for the correlation isn’t just that audiences like bigger casts. The real reason is part of the uniqueness of the MCU.”
Finally, Roughan concluded by saying that it’s important to also remember the contributions made by those working on the movie, such as the actors, directors, etc.
“I think we are just scraping the surface here,” the scientist reflected. “What makes a movie or a franchise work is tremendously complex, and you cannot undervalue the contributions of the brilliant directors, actors and other artists who created these movies. Historically, media analysis has been in the hands of social scientists, who analyze the human pieces of the puzzle, identify tropes, and describe how we feel about movies.”
As Roughan says, they’re really just scratching the surface here as there are obviously a number of reasons why people love the Avengers movies and all of what Marvel releases. But at the same time, this study is far from the first one to point to the stories they tell as a big reason why audiences are so drawn into them.
Regardless of why fans flock to theaters though, it seems that Kevin Feige and co. are obviously doing something right and we’ve no doubt they’ll continue to do so for many years to come.