Marginalia, Graduate Blog

Reboot

Dan Mollison

If you had the opportunity to reboot your favorite show or series, how would you go about it?

That’s the question that we were recently posed in our transmedia class.  Our final project for the semester will involve giving a full presentation to the class explaining how we would go about rebooting our chosen franchise.

Transmedia is a new concept on the leading edge of media production that many in the industry also believe is the way of the future.  A transmedia property involves stories told within the same “story universe” but through different mediums, with each contributing content and knowledge that adds to the collective narrative.  The clearest example of this is the Star Wars franchise: Star Wars began as a series of feature films, but it later spawned books, video games, comic books, and separate merchandising (just to name a few), all of which took place within the same Star Wars “universe.”  When considering that George Lucas gave up the movie rights to Star Wars in order to make the first movie and still became a billionaire (primarily off the series’ merchandising), it’s easy to see the financial appeal transmedia has for producers.

Given the profit potential these types of franchises offer, it’s no surprise that movers and shakers in the media world are more willing to bet on a story that could be expanded into a transmedia franchise.  Knowing how to develop a story that could become a transmedia franchise as well as how to reboot an existing transmedia property are definitely topics worth considering for us Creative Producers as we prepare to launch into the world of media production.

For the reboot assignment, I decided to select a franchise that is not only near and dear to me, but which I believe is woefully underutilized as a transmedia property: the Redwall book series.  Redwall is a young adult fantasy novel series (there are 22 in all) that strongly adheres to the hero’s journey story structure.  The stories take place in the fictional land of Mossflower, which is populated by anthropomorphic animals (mice, squirrels, otters, rats, etc.) who act as people usually would.  Each novel features some sort of battle between good and evil: usually there is a group of good animals who wish to live peacefully, who then suffer some kind of attack from an evil band of animals and must rise up to defend their freedom.  The series explores several themes concerning the nature of war, peace, and how to live joyfully.

So what would my strategy be for rebooting the franchise?  How does one even approach a question like this?  Read on next week to find out more!

Reboot

If you had the opportunity to reboot your favorite show or series, how would you go about it? That’s the question that we were recently posed in our transmedia class.  …

Film & Video - Creative Producing MFA Dan Mollison, dmollison@gmail.com
600 S. Michigan Ave. Chicago, IL 60605

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