The following post is designed as a quick guide for movie studios looking to make their own cinematic universe. The post is not intended for you or I (no, we’re mere mortals and not movie execs), it is instead intended for people who wear suits, sign off on really bad ideas and want to make lots of cash!

Does this sound like you?

If so, read on!

Below you will find five easy steps to help you create your own cinematic universe.

How to make a cinematic universe

Step 1: DO own interesting characters that audiences want to see. There’s nothing worse than trying to convince an audience that they really want to see your dull characters on the big screen just because you want to build a cinematic universe. Instead ensure that you have really interesting characters and then put them at the forefront of your plans. #Don’tBeACyborg

Step 2: DON’T hype up your cinematic universe before you’ve released your first movie. If you do this then audiences will have huge expectations that you simply can’t deliver. Instead, let your universe grow organically at first, with a release schedule that takes into account films and characters that the audience like and/or want to see (see Step 1). #Don’tBeDarkUniverse

Step 3: DO employ someone who is a fan/expert in your characters and their unique backstory. And that means ALL OF YOUR CHARACTERS – not just the one that looks cool. Let this person tell you how much they want every film to have its own look and feel, with characters who are very different. #Don’tMakeEveryCharacterActLikeBatman

Step 4: DON’T always listen to fans. Fans are great and all and have really cool ideas, but that doesn’t mean they know how to make movies. My friend’s hairdresser, Carol has great ideas about Star Wars but that doesn’t mean she knows her way around a clapperboard. Carol doesn’t even know what a dolly grip is! Have your own clear plan, which takes into account Steps 1-3, and stick to it! #Don’tGiveInToTheFanBacklash

Step 5: DO let Disney invest in you. Disney has deep pockets and will be able to fund your dreams. See: Marvel, Pixar, Lucasfilm (and probably Fox). Let Mickey and Co. chuck piles of money at you. Swim in that money, then use it to make really good films.

Stick to steps 1-5 and you won’t go wrong.

Of course, if you’re not quite sure that you can adhere to the five steps above, then I have one last suggestion: Take a notepad, take a pen and sit down with all 19 movies produced/co-produced by Marvel Studios.

Watch all 19 movies.

Make notes.

Do what Marvel does.

Don’t deviate.

It’s that simple.


Now go, make money.