According to one of the studies, subjects preferred to hear about titles of movies that gave away a little of the plot for the film. When a subject was shown a made-up movie title like Daredevil 2 or Daredevil 2: Taking it to the Streets, they showed much more interest in the latter than the former. Also, according to the study, people who were reading the plot summary for Daredevil 2: Taking it to the Streets were more likely to read it all the way through and remember it better, than those who were reading the summary for Daredevil:2.
The Times article also highlighted another study along similar lines which indicated that audiences demand more of a divergent plot from sequels with numbers than they do with names. Researchers hypothesized that this was a result of fear by movie audiences that numbered sequels would just be "clones" of the original and not offer anything new. "People are looking for some kind of clue that the movie is dissimilar, and you can do that either through the title or through the plot," said Professor Sanjay Good, one of the study's authors, in the article.
His co-author, Professor Xavier Dreze, also noted in the article that "few successful long-running series use numbering. If James Bond was called 'James Bond 22' or whatever they are up to (instead of Casino Royale) people would probably be less interested." So, what's in a name? Quite a lot, apparently. At least according to these studies. Interesting stuff, huh? Although, I gotta say, I'm not interested in a sequel to Daredevil no matter what it's called, so this research might be a little lost on me.
What do you think? Does the name really matter?