This franchise uses a multitude of cross-media convergence methods for both business and artistic reason.
These films are based on the Marvel comicbooks, Marvel exploit this fact to promote their films amongst comicbook readers as well as using the films to make comicbooks more accessible to new readers.
Here, on Comixology (the primary platform that large comicbook publishers use to publish digital comics), they are highlighting comics that relate to upcoming Marvel movies (Ant-Man, Captain America Civil War and Avengers: Infinity war parts 1 & 2), this helps to engage audiences as they may be more likely to see things pertaining to the films.
In 2012, around the time of the release of the first Avengers film, Marvel started to publish the large crossover event Avengers Vs. X-Men. This helped to promote the Avengers films with comicbook readers as it put those characters at the forefront of their minds and discussions, even if they were not particularly interested in Avengers comics, this event had tie-ins in many corners of the Marvel universe, meaning that the majority of Marvel books were effected by this event.
Coming out of the event, Marvel launched the MARVEL NOW! initiative, which involved the release of a large number of new series, and as such made it easier for people who had recently watched the films to get into the comicbooks.
Following the Avengers’ release in 2012, Marvel began production of the television show Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD, which would explore a post-alien invasion Marvel Universe. The show would be used to tie-into the films, giving the release of the films extra promotion, for example, Sif, a character from the Thor films has made two guest appearances, and the events of Captain America: The Winter Soldier had a huge impact on the dynamics of the show as that film involved the dismantling of the organisation that the show follows, SHIELD.
More recently, Marvel produced the eight episode mini-series Marvel’s Agent Carter, which followed Peggy Carter, the love interest from the first Captain America film in 1946, mourning the apparent death of the captain and working as a spy. This was used to fill a gap while Agents of SHIELD took a break over Christmas, and helped to maintain interest in this universe without AoS being on.
Marvel are, also, producing 4 thirteen episode shows for Netflix that will tie together and build to a team-up mini-series entitled Marvel’s The Defenders. These shows are Marvel’s Daredevil, Marvel’s A.K.A. Jessica Jones, Marvel’s Luke Cage and Marvel’s Iron Fist. These shows similarly tie-into the larger Marvel Cinematic Universe, however are aimed at much older audience, the first of these shows, Daredevil having a ’15’ bbfc rating. This broadens the audience that the Marvel films can appeal to as more mature people may find Agents of SHIELD a bit light and fluffy to keep them engaged.