By Danielle Broadway
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – The Netflix romantic comedy “XO, Kitty” is returning for a second season, becoming the No. 1 streaming service’s first television series to be spun-off from an original Netflix film, the “To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before” movie trilogy.
Netflix’s “Bridgerton” Regency period drama series has also spawned a spin-off, the “Queen Charlotte” prequel which became one of the platform’s most popular series after its debut in May.
“Queen Charlotte” remained No. 1 on the English TV list ahead of “Firefly Lane” and “Sweet Tooth” during the week of May 8.
The “To All the Boys” and “Bridgerton” franchises reflect Netflix’s objective to expand brands to create content across film, television, games and consumer products, with greater diversity in casting.
“XO, Kitty” has a Korean lead character and “Queen Charlotte” features a Black actor in the title role.
As Netflix’s growth has slowed, the service has begun developing franchises for more revenue from original programs.
The 2016 science fiction series “Stranger Things” was its first successful entertainment franchise, with related merchandise and plans for a spin-off series and a stage play.
“Bridgerton,” adapted from Julia Quinn’s book series, has inspired a merchandise line in partnership with tea retailer Republic of Tea that includes wedding products. A book inspired by the Queen Charlotte character, penned by Quinn and the show’s creator, Shonda Rhimes, cracked the New York Times bestseller list.
Netflix also has live immersive experiences, including “The Queen’s Ball: A Bridgerton Experience.” The pop-up exhibition in different cities allows fans to experience the Regency London portrayed in the series.
The “XO, Kitty” brand has a partnership with Sanrio, a Japanese entertainment company, and American fashion retailer Forever 21 for a clothing line.
(Reporting by Danielle Broadway in Los Angeles; Editing by Richard Chang)