April 30, 2018
Avengers Is More Than a Movie for Disney
For ten years, Disney has been producing and promoting superhero movies, a massive, interlaced project that connected multiple brands and storylines across an ever-expanding universe. Now, that decade-long project is coming to fruition as “Avengers: Infinity War” has been released. For the first time ever, Marvel fans will get to see all their movie favorites on screen, in the same movie, at the same time. And the anticipation for this film could not be higher.
Even if the Infinity War eventually underwhelms, Disney is still going to have a massive year at the box office. From Black Panther to Solo to The Incredibles and Ant-Man sequels, Disney has a string of sure-fire hits landing in theaters in 2018. But, when you look at what it took to get here, Infinity War is more than a movie. It’s the culmination of a huge risk, a big bet, and a massive undertaking. More than a decade ago, Disney producers set out to do something many had tried but few had succeeded in accomplishing: they were going to make superhero movies that appealed both to fans and mass markets, they were going to do them well, and they were going to do them so well, the movies would create a world unto itself.
That project began with Iron Man, fronted by a perfectly-cast Robert Downey, Jr. as Tony Stark. The seismic nature of that hit surprised pretty much everyone, and more movies poured out under multiple different banners. Fans saw The Avengers, Captain America, Thor and even the ‘who are they again?’ Guardians of the Galaxy in massive blockbuster films that nearly everyone loved. Sure, there were a few misses here and there, but, for the most part, the Marvel Cinematic Universe, as it came to be called, was an unprecedented hit. And it’s all been building to this. A world destroyer is coming, and only a combined force of every single MCU hero on screen to date can hope to stop it. Heading into the premier, fans are excited and optimistic. Disney has delivered time and again, so hopes are high. Of course, they are all worried their favorite hero won’t make it out of the film alive, but that just adds to the excitement … and, for those who are right, to the anticipation of the next installment in the line.
It’s important, too, for Disney, that these characters and their stories transcend the theater experience. Disney is also a major merchandising business, so the company wants huge reactions from fans of every generation, so they are compelled to go out and buy Avengers, Black Panther, Guardians and Spiderman branded stuff.
Investments have been made in branded cross-promotion, toys, clothes, and just about any other kind of gear you can imagine. Now, it’s time to see how well it all comes together, both on-screen and off.
Ronn Torossian is the CEO of 5W Public Relations