10 Standalone Movies That Were Marketed As Sequels

One of the most difficult aspects of making a movie is marketing it. To create an entire film from scratch is a very big task, so it is understandable when the creators kind of drop the ball when it comes time to market the film. But that doesn't mean that this justifies changing the entire concept or message of a movie, in favor of marketing it in line with what is popular and trending.

Unfortunately, there are actually several films that have fallen victim of this distasteful Hollywood phenomenon. It's become a well-known tactic of filmmakers to slap the number 2 on the end of a movie's title, call it a sequel to a successful and very well-known movie, and therefore, have it gain popularity from its title alone, rather than its actual content.

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10 TOOTH FAIRY 2 (2012)

It wasn't even as if the original Tooth Fairy was some huge Blockbuster hit. The fact that it starred Dwayne Johnson as the lead was really the film's only redeeming quality, but even The Rock couldn't save it from the poor reception it garnered. But yet, the Tooth Fairy brought in enough cash at the box office, to warrant a "sequel" of sorts, which would go straight to DVD two years later.

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Tooth Fairy 2 is pretty much exactly what you'd expect it to be; a flat, absolutely cringeworthy shadow of the mediocre original film. It has nothing to do with the first, and this one didn't even get to rely on Dwayne Johnson to distract from bad writing and directing.


Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2 director on the film's legacy

In 1999, The Blair Witch Project terrified generations, becoming a groundbreaking success and a milestone in the found footage genre of horror movies. Twenty hours of footage for The Blair Witch Project was shot, and later whittled down to about eighty minutes. With a tight budget of $60,000, it grossed around $250 million at the box office, and was one of the most successful independent films ever made.

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Since The Blair Witch Project was such a masterpiece, making a mock sequel of it was an opportunity too tempting to refuse for director Joe Berlinger. Book Of Shadows really could have been its own film, but was marketed as a Blair Witch Project sequel to for popularity's sake. With that Blair Witch 2 slapped on to the title, this movie was given a budget of $15 million, but only wound up grossing $47 million at the box office.

8 THE FLY 2 (1989)

The Fly hit theatres in 1986, starring Jeff Goldblum and directed by David Cronenberg. It was based on George Langelaan's 1957 short story, and ended up being Cronenberg's most successful film. The Fly is remembered fondly today, as a classic horror movie and a fun thrill ride riddled with fascinating special effects.

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Three years later, in 1989, director Chris Walas took some of the characters from the original movie and attempted to throw together a sequel. The Fly 2 at least tried to carry on some continuity from the first film, even using some stock footage of Jeff Goldblum, but ultimately fell flat. Most fans of The Fly choose to forget that this "sequel" ever happened.



In 2001, Donnie Darko was released in theatres and met a lackluster response. Though it received critical praise, Richard Kelly's masterpiece would not become the cult classic it is today until a little later. Now, Donnie Darko is regarded as one of the most brilliant films ever made.

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So of course, Hollywood just had to take a stab at reviving it in some way, eight years later. S.Darko had an original enough story that it could have been its own film, that didn't have anything to do with Donnie Darko. But favoring marketing over good storytelling, the movie became nothing more than a lifeless attempt at recapturing the psychologically terrifying magic that Donnie Darko had created.


The Last Exorcism hit theatres in 2010, meeting mixed reviews from critics and grossing $67.7 million at the box office, with a $1.8 million budget. The film was not a huge success, but it had a unique enough story and some fairly decent scares. Nevertheless, the response it received never really justified anyone giving it a sequel.

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But in 2013, that's exactly what we got, with the utterly disastrous The Last Exorcism Part II. This movie made a weak attempt to pick up where the original left off, continuing Nell Sweetzer's story. But since this sequel had a completely different director, one could probably guess that it would not be the success that the first film was. In fact, The Last Exorcism Part II failed spectacularly, earning on $15.1 million at the box office, on a budget of $5 million.

5 THE RAGE: CARRIE 2 (1999)

The Rage Carrie 2

Carrie became a significant milestone for horror movies when it hit theatres in 1976. Based on Stephen King's 1974 novel, the movie managed to be a respectful, well-done adaptation. Today, Carrie is one of the most revered, well-known horror movies ever, and it holds an impressive 93% on Rotten Tomatoes.

Since Carrie was so successful, a sequel was pretty much inevitable. This would occur in 1999, twenty-three years after the original was released. As expected, this hollow retelling of Carrie - which was nothing but an extremely thinly-veiled knock-off - fell flat, and completely deserved to.


David Slade's frigid, bloody vampire film, 30 Days Of Night, hit theatres in 2007. It earned an impressive $75.5 million at the box office. The film starred Josh Hartnett and Melissa George as the leads, and was a gory, eerie, powerful addition to the vampire genre.

The success of 30 Days Of Night rendered a sequel three years later, which was titled 30 Days of Night: Dark Days. And Dark Days never even made it off the ground, going straight to DVD. The film lamely attempted to keep some of the characters from the first film, but the actors were completely different, so it never really worked out.

3 GREASE 2 (1982)

Grease is one of the most famous, beloved movies ever. It was released in 1978, and has captivated viewers around the world ever since. The musical teen drama starred John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John as the iconic Danny and Sandy. Their love story was one for the ages, and Grease was a complete hit.

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So who could resist giving it a sequel? Grease 2 was released in 1982, with none of the same characters, actors, or crew members, so naturally, it was not a success. The sequel never really had a chance at recapturing the magic from the original, and it is a film frequently forgotten, which is probably for the better.


The Exorcist is one of the most famous, terrifying horror movies ever made. When it hit theatres in 1973, it frightened audiences so much that it is still regarded today as one of the most frightening movies ever. William Peter Blatty not only wrote the 1971 novel that started it all, but he also wrote the screenplay for the movie, which proved to be an excellent decision.

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Then came the inevitable sequel, in 1977. The Heretic took some of the original characters and source material, such as Regan MacNeil, but ultimately failed to live up to the phenomenal legacy that The Exorcist created.

1 TITANIC II (2010)

One of the most famous movie love stories ever is that of Jack Dawson and Rose DeWitt Bukater's. When Titanic was released in 1997, it became an instant classic, and one of the highest grossing movies of all time - with a whopping $2.187 billion earned at the box office. Titanic and Jack and Rose's story is completely unforgettable.

This massive success meant that someone, of course, had to remake the movie in some way, and thus, Titanic II was made. This pseudo-sequel sets sail under the predictable plot that revolves around the notion that a replica of the Titanic ship goes on a voyage exactly one hundred years to the anniversary of the original ship's wreck.

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