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New World Youth

by Michael Chasin


Hollywood is about genres.

Why?  Because they work.

Action, drama, romance, and comedy are all tried and true profitable genres.

So it’s rare when a new genre emerges.

Dystopian films—where in the future there is a perfect social order, at the expense of a lower class—have been made before—and have generally been considered Sci-Fi.

The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, Ender’s Game, and Divergent—all released in the last two years—suggest a new genre that might be termed—New World Youth.

What sets New World Youth films apart from their dystopian predecessors is that they have young heroes—who undergo training—to maintain the new world order.

These heroes are subject to a cold and calculated selection process and must compete in rigorous training with other youth.

Adult mentors provide skill training—but not moral guidance—so the heroes must find their own morality—as even their parents are in complicity with the new world order.

These young heroes triumph beyond expectation—but yet find the new world order skewed—so then fight to create a more just world.

At its heart, New World Youth taps into core adolescent angst—a twisted adult world—parents part of it—difficult school with make-or-break tests—and friends, who are sometimes competitors.

Youth oriented, with female heroes, New World Youth films attract two of the four marketing demographic quadrants.

Add established adult stars in supporting roles (Harrison Ford, Woody Harrelson, Ashley Judd) and other quadrants are attracted.

New World Youth is a genre custom fit for social media (as opposed to Westerns).

Will New World Youth become an enduring genre?  Only time will time.

But just as Louis B. Mayer and Samuel Goldwyn learned what worked—it is just as vital that you, as a content creator—recognize and understand emerging genres.



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  • Michele G.

    Very interesting blog about this new emerging genre. I’ve not seen these films yet, but this has encouraged me to check them out for sure now.