This book explores horror film franchising from a broad range of interdisciplinary perspectives and considers the horror film’s role in the history of franchising and serial fiction.
Comprising 12 chapters written by established and emerging scholars in the field, Horror Franchise Cinema redresses critical neglect toward horror film franchising by discussing the forces and factors governing its development across historical and contemporary terrain while also examining text and reception practices. Offering an introduction to the history of horror franchising, the chapters also examine key texts including Universal Studio monster films, Blumhouse production films, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, A Nightmare on Elm Street, Alien, I Spit on Your Grave, Let the Right One In, Italian zombie films, anthology films, and virtual reality.
A significant contribution to studies of horror cinema and film/media franchising from the 1930s to the present day, this book will be of interest to students and scholars of film studies, media and cultural studies, franchise studies, political economy, audience/reception studies, horror studies, fan studies, genre studies, production cultures, and film histories.
Table of Contents
The Death and Resurrection Show: Horror Franchise Cinema and the Romanticization of Cult
William Proctor and Mark McKenna
1. Building Imaginary Horror Worlds: Transfictional Storytelling and the Universal Monster Franchise Cycle
Section I: Slasher and Post-Slashers
2. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: A ‘Peculiar, Erratic’ Franchise
3. If I Were a Carpenter: Prestige and Authorship in the Halloween Franchise
4. If Nancy Doesn’t Wake Up Screaming: The Elm Street Series as Recurring Nightmare
5. Allowing ‘Us Just to LIVE There’: Atmosphere and Audience Evaluation of the Alien Film Series
Section II: Millennial Franchises
6. Cut-Price Creeps: The Blumhouse Model of Horror Franchise Management
7. When the Subtext Becomes Text: The Purge Takes on the American Nightmare
Section III: Cult Franchises
8. “What Film is Your Film Like”? Negotiating Authenticity in the Distributive Seriality of the Zombi Franchise
9. Horror Heroine or Symbolic Sacrifice: Defining the I Spit on Your Grave Franchise as Horror
Section IV: Complicating Franchising
10. Seriality between the Horror Franchise and the Horror Anthology Film
11. When is a Franchise Not a Franchise: The Case of Let the Right One In
12. ‘A Match Made in Heaven (or Hell)’: Franchise Experiments Between the Horror Film Genre and Virtual Reality Media (2014-2020)
Mark McKenna is Lecturer in Film, Television and Radio at Staffordshire University, UK.
William Proctor is Principal Lecturer in Comics, Film & Transmedia at Bournemouth University, UK.