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Top 10 Movie Franchises That Should Pass the Torch to the Next Hero

VO: Rebecca Brayton WRITTEN BY: Garrett Alden

Script written by Garrett Alden

It might be time for a fresh start. From Scream, to The Fast the Furious, to Mission Impossible, these franchises should give some fresh faces a chance. WatchMojo ranks the top movie franchises that should pass the torch to the next hero.

Check out the voting page for this list and add your picks: https://www.WatchMojo.comsuggest/Top+10+Movie+Franchises+That+Should+Pass+the+Torch+to+the+Next+Hero Special thanks to our user governmentfree for suggesting this idea!


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Script written by Garrett Alden

Top 10 Movie Franchises That Should Pass the Torch to the Next Hero

Let’s give a new generation the chance. Welcome to and today we’ll be counting down our picks for the Top 10 Movie Franchises That Should Pass the Torch to the Next Hero.

For this list, we’ll be looking at film franchises that could be improved or reinvigorated by introducing new characters and stories, and, hopefully, having the old characters give them their blessing. Just to be clear, we’re talking new characters entirely – no reboots or reimaginings here.

#10: “Scream” franchise (1996-)

A slasher horror franchise with elements of black comedy and satire, “Scream” changed the genre’s game, due to its self-awareness and whodunit twists. While the 2015 TV spin-off focuses on new characters, all the films have starred Sidney Prescott as the heroine. The premise and satirical nature of the series seems rife with ideas for further stories to tell on the big screen, and it’d be great to expand the films beyond its previous heroine’s life; even if it means her status as the “final girl” archetype has to come to an end.

#9: “Lethal Weapon” franchise (1987-)

This seminal series in the buddy cop action comedy genre follows a grizzled veteran, Detective Murtaugh, and his partner, the unhinged and unpredictable Riggs. While this is another film franchise that has seen a revival/reboot on television, we’d be interested in seeing Murtaugh and Riggs pass the reins of their department on to the next generation in the final big screen escapade that was confirmed by Richard Donner in December 2017. Murtaugh may be too old for this shit, but there are plenty of characters, and actors to play them, who aren’t.

#8: “RoboCop” franchise (1987-93; 2014-)

A cyberpunk superhero franchise with heavy satire, “RoboCop” follows Alex Murphy, a cop who is gunned down and then resurrected as a cyborg, dubbed RoboCop, who cleans up the streets (and corporate corruption) of Detroit. The world of “RoboCop” is still rife with possibilities to be further explored, and limiting the series to a single RoboCop curtails the series’ great potential - as the 2014 reboot demonstrated. What about a whole police force of RoboCops? Maybe Murphy could be the one running it, so he can pass on his experience to those under his command.

#7: “The Fast and the Furious” franchise (2001-)

This fast-paced action/heist film series centers on a group of criminals who engage in street racing, robberies, and other high octane car chases. While the franchise has a large ensemble cast, its two main leads are definitely Dominic Toretto and Brian O’Conner. However, O’Conner’s absence following the tragic death of actor Paul Walker has definitely been felt in the franchise - some of its heart has been undeniably lost. While another two films and a spin-off are planned for the franchise as of mid-2018, which will apparently conclude it, we think it could easily continue with a few fresh additions or an entirely new crew, provided Dom and the gang gave them their blessing.

#6: “Mission: Impossible” franchise (1996-)

A long-running spy action franchise, “Mission: Impossible” follows Ethan Hunt and a revolving door of supporting characters in a variety of outlandish, but always action-packed adventures in espionage. While Tom Cruise continues to be a compelling lead, he can’t carry the series forever. The franchise is actually based on a television series of the same name, but with different characters, so taking the premise in a new direction would hardly be new to “Mission: Impossible”. With Cruise now well over 50 years old, it might be nice to see this spy turn his mission over to some new heroes, should they choose to accept it.

#5: “Star Trek” franchise (1979-)

Though we’re as excited as anyone else about the direction of the Kelvin Timeline “Star Trek” films, we’re also keenly aware that the franchise can do more. The 21st century reboot of the film series has breathed new life into the franchise, so why not capitalize on that by making a movie featuring new characters? The voyages of Kirk, Spock, and the starship Enterprise are fun to watch, true, but by focusing on one ship and its familiar stories, the franchise isn’t boldly going where no one has gone before anymore.

#4: “Pirates of the Caribbean” franchise (2003-)

After five films, Captain Jack Sparrow’s welcome is starting to wear thin. The “Pirates of the Caribbean” franchise depicts the kooky pirate and his supernaturally themed misadventures on the high seas. A breakout character in the first film, Jack was scene-stealing icing on the “cake”. However, it has become increasingly clear that it’s hard to build a substantive story on icing, and the world inhabited by this franchise has so much more to offer. Captain Jack remains an admittedly charismatic and magnetic presence though, so ideally, they’d find a worthy successor to take the torch from Orlando Bloom’s Will Turner, and keep Jack around for the odd cameo or supporting role.

#3: “Men in Black” franchise (1997-)

Telling the story of a pair of agents in a secret organization that polices alien activity on Earth while keeping it a secret from the general public, “Men in Black” is a solid franchise - but one that could do with some new leads. Agents J and K, as well as their respective actors, are getting older, and while Will Smith could probably carry the franchise himself, we’d also like to see new stories and characters from the franchise. The premise and universe are rife with stories, so it’s a little disappointing that we haven’t seen more variety. Here’s hoping the planned spin-off and crossover films help it live up to its potential.

#2: “Die Hard” franchise (1988-)

Yippee kay yay. The “Die Hard” franchise follows cop John McClane as he becomes embroiled in a variety of situations that see him have to defeat violent criminals or terrorists against incredible odds. Part of what made McClane such a compelling hero at first, was how much of an everyman protagonist he was. However, as time has gone on, he’s developed into a seemingly unstoppable badass. While the idea of a prequel or reboot series has been tossed around, another way to reinvigorate the franchise could be for McClane to take a new unlikely hero under his wing. Kind of like they did in “A Good Day to Die Hard”, but this time successfully.

#1: “Terminator” franchise (1984-)

Given the franchise’s premise, which is that a race of machines has taken over/wiped out humanity in the future and that they have used time travel to ensure their supremacy, there seems a wealth of possibilities, including stories and characters, to explore. However, the “Terminator” franchise has been fixated on future savior John Conner, his mother, and a particular model of their robotic adversaries/protectors. With how circular the series has become, it’s about time to say “Hasta la vista” to Terminator’s original heroes and make room for something new. Supposedly, this is the plan for the next film in the franchise, set for 2019, and if so, “we’ll be back” to the theaters to check it out.


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