Spiderman Planning to Weave a Web in China

In USA on July 31, 2011 by tbrackens

Stan Lee, the creator of the comic book Spiderman has plans to bring superheroes, whom are based in Shanghai and/or Hong Kong to the Chinese big screen.  The comic book legend announced a joint venture with a Hong Kong investment company that aims to roll out a new superhero franchise targeted at Chinese and foreign audiences.

“I have been eagerly awaiting this great opportunity, — a chance to combine the best of American superhero epics with the best of Chinese and Asian classical filmmaking for a motion picture that would be excitedly received worldwide,” Lee said in the statement.

272 million on instant message, 222 million on online video, 108 million on online shopping and 40% of the people creating user-generated content according to Jim Tobin, whether Spiderman is live action or animated, it should do very well.  Maybe because the three “Spider-Man” movies starring Tobey Maguire made a combined $30 million in China and the two “Iron Man” movies featuring Robert Downey Jr. made $23.2 million, according to the box office tracking website Box Office Mojo.

Or maybe the Spider-man superhero will do well because the trending topics in the Chinese micro-blogging scene typically consist of non-news content. According to a Hp study, the team has found out that most of the influential authors on China’s popular micro-blogging platform, Sina WeiBo, who are responsible for the majority of “retweets” that are made tend to focus on non-news topics such as “follower-contributed jokes, movie trivia, quizzes and stories”.

Therefore, with the power of Weibo, which has more than 140 million users, the possibilities are endless for Spiderman to offer a digitally enhanced experience to China’s netizens. On the site multimedia content is integrated directly into the website’s interface, so that no one ever has to leave. Celebrities and members of the media elite are already there and currently have a huge presence on the site—frequently upload content straight to Weibo for their follower-fans to engage with.  For example, Chinese actress Yao Chen currently holds the most popular account in China, with over six million followers. As a result, the personal accounts of fashion industry figures often attract more followers than the accounts of large fashion media brands.

Weibo is more than a place to build a following. For Spiderman, it can be an incredibly powerful real-time research and testing tool. You can immediately see how the market and your following will respond.

One Response to “Spiderman Planning to Weave a Web in China”

  1. I liked your unique topic that you chose this week and looking at how a film like Spiderman might be able to use social media to maximize its success in China was an interesting thought. What I found missing from your post was any research into what might already exist in relation to this topic. You mention that the previous Spiderman movies were highly successful in China – did any of them already use social media in some way for promotion that could be leveraged? In many countries, there are entire fan clubs and message boards devoted to superheroes like Spiderman. Were there any in China that might have been useful to partner with or to use for finding some of the “super fans” who might be really active in helping to promote the new film?

    Your point about Weibo being beneficial could be right, but without looking at the broader range of possibilities for a film like Spiderman with a built in fan base, you missed out on adding this dimension to your post and it was less complete than I expected based on your work in previous blog posts. (3)

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