Give Me MORE! Movies That Should Have Become Franchises Or Spawned a Sequel

Why is it we’ve had eight Fast and Furious movies (including one spin-off) – with more of them in the works – yet Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story was only a “one and done” movie? Yeah, yeah, I know, I know. I’m not the target audience (which we all know is the Republic of China).

Now…if they made a hybrid Fast and Furious and Transformers movie – where the cars that the super good looking – and wise talking people steal – also transform in mid-air – well then – you would have my interest! I have a feeling Chinese audiences might even like that film franchise (but really…what the Hell do I know)? All I know is Hell YES to cars transforming in mid-air while super good looking people (who was that guy who died?) are engaged in high-speed stunt driving?

I’ve seen quite a few Leo memes from Django Unchained floating around…so why not?

Likewise, we’ve had so many Toy Story installments that Andy has definitely advanced to adult toys by now. No, no…I’m not talking about sex toys (or maybe I am?) – but some adult “toys” for a male could be ATVs, personal watercraft, boats, crotch rockets, etc. If he’s a hipster, maybe he has a “fixie” or one of those bulky 1950s-era bikes like the one Pee Wee rode in that movie about his adventure.

The Toy Story franchise started in 1995, Toy Story 4 came out in 2019! Let’s pretend Andy was – let’s say 8 -when Toy Story came out, so that would make him 33 if this “toy story” made chronological sense. Maybe he’d at least have an early 1990s Ford Mustang that he claims is his “toy,” which he tells his friends is “like…so vintage.”

Buuuut….I’m not going to question sequels made for kiddo movies. They don’t have to make chronological sense, they don’t need to be original, they don’t need to be interesting for adults to watch (I give the Shrek films a lot of credit for being kind of interesting for adults), they just need to do the most important thing of all – make money (especially overseas). Also keep kids mesmerized, and ideally quiet for 90 minutes or so while the adults catch up on their screen time.

Without further ado, why don’t I get on with my movies wish list?

Movies That Should Have Generated Sequels

If Sleepy Hollow had become a franchise, then maybe Johnny Depp wouldn’t have worn out his welcome in the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise.

Sleepy Hollow – 1999

The 1999 film Sleepy Hollow ends with the main characters Katrina and Ichabod in New York City around the turn of the century (1800). This would be a great set-up for a forensic science based film series with lily-livered Ichabod becoming a virtual American Sherlock Holmes in the Big Apple using deduction – and science – to solve crimes. Look how popular “CSI” was as a franchise, also consider the profitability of the Sherlock Holmes films directed by Guy Ritchie. This franchise would have worked – IMHO and would have been profitable, IMHO. Would Tim Burton have been able to do them? Doubtful, he doesn’t seem to be huge on sequels (Batman Returns is the only one I can think of directed by Burton). And Johnny Depp as Ichabod is WAY hotter than Johnny Depp imitating Keith Richards as Jack Sparrow. I feel almost bad for saying this because I do love me some pirates (argh)!

Christoph Waltz and Jamie Foxx in Django Unchained

Django Unchained, 2012

Django Unchained ends with Django burning down a f—ing plantation and killing everyone there. You’d better BELIEVE he is going to be a hunted man after this little caper! What better way to chronicle his and his wife Broomilda von Shaft’s exploits as they attempt to make a new life for themselves – and escape the law – then a sequel? Film director Quentin Tarantino doesn’t tend to do sequels, though he is a fan of his characters having a shared universe – so he does love continuity. Read more about Tarantino and his shared universe here:

Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story remains one of my favorite all-time movies and is always enjoyable to re-watch.

Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story – 2004

Let’s talk about that other underdog-inspired sports movie that generated sequels, shall we? Yes, I’m talking about the Bad News Bears. Hell, in a rare departure since I normally despise remakes and re-boots (and really, really hate she-boots, read more about my thoughts on “she-boots” in this other blog I wrote, I actually didn’t even mind the 2005 “reboot” with Billy Bob Thornton in the role originally played by Walter Matthau. Did you know the young actress playing the pitcher Amanda Whurlitzer (Sammi Kane Kraft) in the movie really was a bad-ass baseball player in real life – but she also tragically died in a car accident when she was just 20?

The original Bad News Bears franchise spawned the sequels The Bad News in Breaking Training (1977) and The Bad News Bears Go To Japan (1978) and even a short-lived CBS series from 1979 to 1980. And eventually, the 2005 remake. I’m fairly certain I saw both of those sequels in the theaters when I was a kid. We didn’t have Pixar films – or even a lot of animated movies to watch when I was a kid in the mid 1970s, we just had a grumpy Walter Matthau, the original Star Wars and whatever old Disney movie they happened to feel like releasing in theaters (though The Rescuers was a new Disney film when I was about that age…those mice were SO cute)! The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh was also released in 1977, but I’m not sure whether I saw that one in theaters or not. A few years earlier, the animated Robin Hood was released (1973) and a bit farther back than that The Aristocats was released (1970). As a kid back then, we didn’t get to re-watch movies at home quite yet. We had to do the next best thing and get the book/record sets – or just records with songs from the movie – to help us re-live the experience of the movies. I actually liked that horribly politically incorrect “We Are Siamese, if You Please” song from Lady and The Tramp when I was a kid (we actually had a cat that was part Siamese – and what does a 5 year old girl know about political correctness)? I had a .45 with that song on it, and I had my own orange portable record player (I used that thing a LOT). Oh the hardships of not having video on demand! How ever did us Gen-X kids survive? I mean get out…mono sound?

But enough childhood reminiscing, let’s talk about Dodgeball! There were so many likeable characters in that movie, sports is a popular movie premise (especially underdog teams), and Vince Vaughn could pretty much do no wrong in the mid 2000s. Let’s pretend that after the events of the 2004 film, dodgeball becomes an Olympic sport. There are so many possible plot lines that could come out of the original Joe’s Garage game qualifying for Olympic play – and playing in the Olympics. Does White Goodman lose the weight and try to play – or does he just become a coach? There are multiple directions you could go with a sequel to Dodgeball. But apparently, it was just not to be…

Movies That Were Best as “One and Done”

Jaws (1975) was one of the first film franchises, but we did not need any of the sequels to the original movie, IMHO. If Michael Caine were dead, he’d probably be rolling in his grave about having been in one of them.

What about the reverse? What about movies that should have been “one and done?” Yes, I have a short list of those too! Without going into any explanation, I’ll just say The Matrix, Jaws, The Hobbit (too much butter spread over too much bread – The Hobbit did NOT need to be three movies they should have just made one awesome Hobbit movie and one awesome prequel movie to the Lord of the Rings and possibly an awesome Silmarillion movie, yes I know this doesn’t jibe with “one and done,” LOL) and Airplane! (as much as I loved the original, that sequel was just bad, bad, bad).

Sigh. I really do miss going “to the movies!” Movie theaters in my state (Michigan) are still closed because of the plague, and even if they open back up, I won’t be in a huge hurry to go out to them. It was nice seeing Bill and Ted Face the Music on demand when it was released from the comfort of my living room. I’m hearing about friends crossing the border into Toledo to watch theater films! No thanks!

What’s next? Another installment in the Kingsman franchise is coming soon! The King’s Man (a prequel) is expected to open in February, 2021. In time for my birthday, woot! Yes, I’m sad Eggsy won’t be in it, but Rasputin WILL be in it (be still my heart, you long-haired cretin)! 🙂

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