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Analysis of a Transmedia Narrative: “The Hunger Games”

The Hunger Games‘ first film, Catching Fire, has become an excellent example of a transmedia storytelling campaign. The Hunger Games takes place in a dystopian post-apocalyptic future in Panem. Every year, a boy and a girl from each country’s 12 districts are chosen as a tribute and forced to participate in The Hunger Games, the television battle (Collins, 2008). It can be argued that the franchise’s overall success is primarily due to the unique transmedia campaign of the first film.

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Several projects were created within one campaign. Among them are billboards on city streets, The Capitol Couture website on Tumblr, Catching Fire’s channel on YouTube, and posts on Twitter and Facebook. Since people could see billboards on actual streets, it can be argued this project combines fictional and non-fictional features. The project’s goal was to attract potential viewers’ attention by including them in The Hunger Games universe. The predominant audience of the project was young people, users of social networks.

Lionsgate’s viral marketing campaign for The Hunger Games was the most successful campaign for the franchise. The strategies used for other films did not add any new features and mainly took advantage of Lionsgate’s developments. Transmedia projects that are proactive are considered up front, with tie-ins planned from the start (Rampazzo Gambarato, 2013). From the point of view of film releases, this project is pro-active since its development began seven months before release.

This project includes multiple entry points into the story world; viewers can start exploring the story by watching videos or examining the Capitol Couture website. The Hunger Games universe allows the creation of extensions; the adherence to the canon is required but not too strict. For example, photoshoots and videos with the main characters of the films posted on Tumblr have nothing to do with the general plot of the films. The story develops with the addition of new content as suggested in Rampazzo Gambarato’s article.

The Lionsgate Instagram promotion was all about fashion; the official trailers for the film were broadcast on Twitter, along with realistic announcements to Panem’s residents. The movie’s promoting social media effort revealed a deep awareness of the film’s niche fan base (Ivanna Planet, 2020). The creators of the campaign managed to create an immersive experience and expand the scope of the narrative. Each of the social networks used in the campaign added something different to the project.

References

Ivanna Planet. (2020). The Hunger Games and transmedia storytelling. Web.

Collins, S. (2008). The Hunger Games. United States: Scholastic Press.

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Rampazzo Gambarato, R. (2013). Transmedia Project Design: Theoretical and Analytical Considerations. Baltic Screen Media Review, 1(1), 80-100. Web.

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StudyCorgi. "Analysis of a Transmedia Narrative: “The Hunger Games”." January 14, 2023. https://studycorgi.com/analysis-of-a-transmedia-narrative-the-hunger-games/.

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StudyCorgi. 2023. "Analysis of a Transmedia Narrative: “The Hunger Games”." January 14, 2023. https://studycorgi.com/analysis-of-a-transmedia-narrative-the-hunger-games/.

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StudyCorgi. (2023) 'Analysis of a Transmedia Narrative: “The Hunger Games”'. 14 January.

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