At the end of October, comic book sensations and popular culture icons Marvel unveiled their upcoming film releases for 2015 and beyond. Starting with the highly anticipated Avengers: Age of Ultron and Ant-Man in the next twelve months, the group have 11 releases planned for the next four years as they continue successful franchises and translate new ones beneath the bright lights of Hollywood.
The impact of Marvel’s characters has been felt far beyond the silver screen, however, with the distinct worlds of gaming and music also touched by their influence.
Marvel’s rivalry with fellow studio DC is well-known, but the former undoubtedly has the edge in terms of commercial and global appeal. Much of this lies with its character base, which includes iconic anti-heroes such as Spiderman, Iron Man and of course the Incredible Hulk.
Diverse and complex in their make-up, these characters have successfully made the leap from comic book pages to the public mainstream using movies and gaming titles as their primary platforms.
To understand this, we need look no further than Spider-Man and his growing popularity in the world of popular culture.
To begin with, the Amazing Spider Man 2 was released to box office success last year, as revenues of $708.9 million represented a return of more than 300% on the original $200 million budget. This offers an insight into how popular the character has become, while the commissioning of popular PlayStation 3 and console games has driven this exposure further.
In addition to this, it is worth noting that the Spiderman video slots are among the most popular games of their type, generating millions of dollars in revenue for virtual casinos on an annual and unrelenting basis.
Spiderman represents the tip of the iceberg for Marvel Comics, however, with Iron Man, X-Men and the Hulk also adding depth while generating considerable revenues. This wealth of income and popularity is only likely to grow further in the years ahead, while the upcoming Avengers movie is also likely to deliver huge box office success.
With this in mind, Marvel stands as the single most successful comic book studio in the world, and one that is driven by the strength and depth of its numerous characters.