The world is no stranger to film franchises. Sometimes it can be based on a series of beloved books, or it can be an expansion into a very popular story world. Either way, Hollywood seems to believe that the more the merrier. Why put out the flames that are already burning?
However, sometimes things don’t always go according to plan. Between the idea that less is more and dwindling box-office returns, that’s perhaps why so many planned sequels were dropped from development. Whether due to a lack of popularity or the risk of harming the original film’s legacy, several follow-ups were never made.
10 ‘The Divergent Series: Ascendent’
Like many YA dystopian adaptations, DifferentThe final installment was originally announced as a two-part story — with the first creature Loyal and the second being Power. Unfortunately, with Loyal became a huge box-office bomb, the planned film adaptation of Power fall fast.
According to Variety, Lionsgate instead decided to turn the final chapter into a television movie. As time went on, further announcements about changes were made, such as how Starz would expand the story into a series and much of the original cast — incl Shailene Woodley – never come back. However in 2018, a spokesperson for Starz confirmed that the project was “no longer in active development”.
9 ‘Little Chick 2’
Disney cult classic animation, creators Little chicken had planned to make a direct-to-video sequel. Based on Tod Carterlongtime DisneyToons collaborator, the plot will tentatively explore a love triangle between Chicken Little (Zach Braff), his childhood friend Abby “the ugly duckling” Mallard (Joan Cusack), and a charming French lamb named Raffaela.
Plans changed once John Lasseter became the new head of the Disney animation studio. He made it clear that he was not a fan of the DisneyToon video-making project and immediately canceled many of the sequels that were in development, incl Little Chicken 2.
8 ‘The Chronicles of Narnia: The Witch’s Nephew’
Depicting one of cinema’s coolest fantasy worlds, Chronicle of Narnia see the end of the Pevensie children’s story with Dawn Treader cruise. However, according to the president of Walden Media, this will not be the final installment of the franchise, as they are currently developing an adaptation of The Witch’s Nephew. This prequel story will explore the origins of Narnia.
Unfortunately, as of 2011, Walden’s contract has expired, and they no longer own the franchise. Thus, the planned adaptation was ultimately cancelled. Currently, Netflix owns the rights and is allegedly developing a reboot of the entire series; however, it has been several years since any update, putting the franchise in limbo.
7 ‘Mrs. Doubt 2’
With that being one Robin Williamthe most famous image, some people may be surprised that a Mrs. Doubtfire a sequel was in development for several years. The initial concept was designed in the early 2000s, but neither Williams nor Chris Columbus — film director — loved it.
However, in 2014, it was revealed that Fox was working on a sequel. Columbus even confirmed it, stating that there were “good manuscripts” and that “[Williams] ready to do it.” Unfortunately, his sudden death put an end to production opportunities, and rightly so. In fact, Columbus had already put his foot down, declaring that Mrs. Doubtfire inextricably linked to Williams and its sequel “surely could never happen now.”
6 ‘ET II: Nocturnal Fear’
considered as one Steven Spielberggreatest movie, it’s no wonder studios are fighting so hard for a ET sequel. In fact, Spielberg and Melissa Mathison‘s treatment story ET II: Nocturnal Fears eventually leaked across the internet, showing how the proposed sequel would be far darker and more violent than the heartwarming original film.
Spielberg has since explained that the project failed because he believed the sequel would “rob the original of its virginity”. In other words, any sequel story would taint the legacy and impact of the original film.
5 ‘Smooth Blade’
With the epic fantasy adaptations that were popular throughout the 2000s, Philip PullmanClassic novels are the next target. Before Golden Compass even released Hossein Amen has been assigned to write the next manuscript Smooth Blade.
Sadly, like many films before and after it, this planned sequel was ultimately shelved due to slow box-office returns and poor critical and fan reception. Not only that Golden Compass riddled with religious controversy, but many fans disliked how the film significantly altered the events of Pullman’s novel. Luckily for them, 12 years later, a great television reboot has arrived in the form of HBO The Dark Material.
4 ‘God of Mars’
Optimistic that the first film will spark the next epic sci-fi franchise, Andrew Stanton already charted not one but two previous sequels John Carter it has even been released in theaters. His vision failed as the film was a huge box office disaster.
According to Stanton, the second installment will be titled God of Mars and will put John Carter (Taylor Kitsch) and Dejah Thoris’ (Lynn Collins) child in the middle of the narration. With sudden abductions, wild space travel, and a secret alien civilization, it’s seriously exciting. Too bad it won’t see the light of day.
3 ‘The Cat in the Hat is Back’
As one of the coolest kids movies of the 2000s, mostly Hated CatRelative success can be accredited Mike Myers‘ iconic performance. Yet, oddly enough, he’s partly to blame for the aborted sequel The Cat in the Hat is Coming Back.
Speaking to Today, Audrey Geisel — Theodor “Dr. Seuss” Geisel‘s widow – revealed that she was very disappointed with the film adaptation and never wanted Myers to play Cat in the first place. In fact, his disdain for the film was so extreme that he banned Hollywood from changing Dr. Phil’s story. Seuss got into live action again.
2 ‘Gump & Co.’
Having won many prestigious awards for her thrilling story and iconic performances, Gump Forest has established itself as a core part of cinema. It’s no wonder the author of the original novel ended up writing a sequel book titled Gump & Co. A few years later, Eric Roth — the writer of the original film — was ultimately tasked with adapting it into a screenplay.
Unfortunately, by the time he finished it, Roth was shipping it on the night of September 10, 2001. According to Roth, he, Tom Hanks, and Robert Zemeckis simply didn’t agree that the film would fail in a post-9/11 world. , but its relevance has waned in the years following its release. There’s no way they’re going to push development on a sequel.
1 ‘Hairspray 2: White Lipstick’
Given that the film is a favorite adaptation of the hit Broadway musical, some may be surprised that there are actually plans to continue Tracy Turnblad’s saga (Nikki Blonsky). In fact, the progress was going so well Hairspray 2: White Lipstick actually had the entire script written and ready to go, thanks to John Waters.
From the Vietnam War, British bands, and pimple singing – the movie is going to be a wild ride. Too bad Adam Shankman — the film’s director — has since confirmed that the project has reached an impasse. Imagine all the iconic songs and dance sequences we could have.
KEEP READING: 10 Movie Franchises That Continued After The Main Cast Left