Movie Sequels You Probably Forgot Existed

“Bambi II” is the mostly forgotten sequel to a Disney classic.

A still from “Bambi II.”

DisneyToon Studios

Released 64 years after the original, “Bambi II” reunites the young buck with his father, the Great Prince. The flick, despite its beautiful animation and a heartwarming storyline, falls short of the original, however.

It was described as a “lightly amusing but unremarkable sequel” by Variety.

“Mean Girls 2” tried to capitalize on the success of the original movie written by Tina Fey, but it wasn’t a fan-favorite.

mean girls 2 still of three actresses

A still from “Mean Girls 2.”


The TV movie echoed the first “Mean Girls” by following a student who starts at North Shore High School and encounters the new “Plastics” clique.

However, while the original movie was lauded as “refreshingly honest,” the sequel fell short. 

“Whatever problems I had with the 2004 feature aren’t even an issue here, as the new film offers a decidedly more pedestrian take on the clique warfare concept, trading Fey’s sly ambition for cruel DTV routine,” wrote critic Brian Orndorf.

“Staying Alive” is the lesser-known sequel to “Saturday Night Fever.”

black and white photo of John Travolta wearing a black leather jacket

John Travolta on the movie set of “Staying Alive.”

Mel Finkelstein/NY Daily News Archive/Getty Images

“Staying Alive” was released in 1983, six years after John Travolta wowed audiences with the Bee Gees-packed movie “Saturday Night Fever.” However, not even the fanfare of the original movie could salvage this sequel.

“Only the presence of John Travolta turns ‘Staying Alive’ from an unqualified disaster into a qualified one,” wrote Janet Maslin of the New York Times. “‘Staying Alive’ is a sequel with no understanding of what made its predecessor work. The first film was funny and touching, powered by a phenomenally successful score. This one is clumsy, mean spirited, and amazingly unmusical.”

“My Summer Story” is the summertime sequel to holiday favorite “A Christmas Story.”

my summer story still

A still from “My Summer Story.”

MGM Studios

Released 11 years after the original movie, “My Summer Story,” which also ran under the title “It Runs in the Family,” starred an almost entirely different cast, except for the role of Miss Shield played by Tedde Moore.

The little-known sequel was poorly received by audience members — it scored just 46% on Rotten Tomatoes.

“The Rage: Carrie 2” follows a similar storyline to Stephen King’s “Carrie.”

carrie 2 scene with girl staring at someone with locker in the foreground

A still from “The Rage: Carrie 2.”

MGM Studios

Of those who have seen “The Rage: Carrie 2,” opinions are largely unfavorable. 

The film scored low among both critics and audience members on Rotten Tomatoes, with Chicago Sun-Times critic Roger Ebert calling it “a shadow” of the original horror flick. 

“I can imagine the story conference: ‘Let’s think up some reason why the heroine has exactly the same ability Carrie had, and then let’s put her in a story where exactly the same things happen to her, with the same result.’ People actually get paid for thinking up things like that. Too much, if you ask me,” he wrote.

“Look What’s Happened to Rosemary’s Baby” is another TV movie that failed to live up to the original.

Tina Louise, Philip Boyer appearing in the ABC TV movie "Look What's Happened to Rosemary's Baby."

Tina Louise, Philip Boyer appearing in the ABC TV movie “Look What’s Happened to Rosemary’s Baby.”

American Broadcasting Companies/Getty Images

The mostly forgotten sequel to “Rosemary’s Baby” picks up where the original movie left off, but definitely doesn’t have the same fan following as the original.

While the first movie received two Oscar nominations and made $33 million at the box office on a budget of $3 million, the 1976 straight-to-TV movie is mostly unknown to fans and has a 3.4/10 score on IMDb.

The sequel to “The Blair Witch Project,” “Book Of Shadows: Blair Witch 2,” isn’t very well known, nor was it particularly well received.

Blair Witch 2: Book of Shadows still of man wearing headphones looking at computer

A still from “Blair Witch 2: Book of Shadows.”

Haxan Films

“The Blair Witch Project” is one of the most profitable and successful independent films of all time, using a found-footage aesthetic to create a compelling horror movie. However, its sequel “Book Of Shadows: Blair Witch 2,” is largely forgotten about. 

Although the film did make $47 million worldwide against its $15 million budget, the movie received negative reviews from critics.

The film received only a 14% positive score on Rotten Tomatoes from over 100 critic reviews, with the critic consensus reading, “This sequel to ‘Blair Witch Project’ is all formula and no creativity, mechanically borrowing elements from the original and other horror movies.”

You probably don’t know about the sequel to Disney’s 1950 classic. “Cinderella II: Dreams Come True” was released straight to DVD in 2002.

cinderella cartoon wearing pink and white dress

A still from “Cinderella II: Dreams Come True.”

DisneyToon Studios

“Cinderella II” was released more than 50 years after the first movie came out. You might be wondering why the sequel was necessary, and you wouldn’t be alone.

“If Disney’s 1950 favorite ‘Cinderella’ proved that ‘a dream is a wish your heart makes,’ then ‘Cinderella II: Dreams Come True’ proves that a nightmare is a wish a studio’s wallet makes,” wrote Michael Dequina of “In their latest direct-to-video attempt to cash in on a movie classic, Disney proves all too painfully why fairy tales end with ‘happily ever after’ instead of ‘to be continued.'”

“Grease 2” didn’t generate the cult-like popularity of the first movie.

Grease 2 actors underneath the bleachers smoking cigarettes

A scene from the film “Grease 2.”

Paramount/Getty Images

Released in 1982, four years after Sandy and Danny flew off in Greased Lightning, the film follows a new gang of Pink Ladies and T-Birds. However, not even Michelle Pfeiffer starring as the leading role could salvage this sequel, which barely surpassed its budget in box-office sales.

“Grease 2” received a rotten 39% critic score and a 53% audience approval score on Rotten Tomatoes.

“S. Darko: A Donnie Darko Tale” is set seven years after the events of Richard Kelly’s smash hit.

S. Darko still

A still from “S. Darko: A Donnie Darko Tale.”

20th Century Fox Home Entertainment

While “Donnie Darko” is lauded by critics as “a daring, original vision, packed with jarring ideas and intelligence,” the sequel was much less well-received.

“S. Darko: A Donnie Darko Tale,” earned negative reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, both from critics and audience ratings. The original director has said he was not involved in the sequel.

“The Rescuers Down Under” is the sequel to Disney’s animated adventure film “The Rescuers.”

rescuers down under scene young boy riding an eagle

A still from “The Rescuers Down Under.”

Walt Disney Studios

While the sequel was generally well-received by both critics and audience members, “The Rescuers Down Under” is nowhere near as well known as the original, which took four years and $7.5 million to complete. 

Despite grossing $27.9 million in the US, TV advertising of the movie was pulled after an opening weekend that was less profitable than expected. The first movie grossed $71 million.

“The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian” didn’t live up to the hype of the first movie in the series.

chronicles of narnia prince caspien cast

A still from “The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian.”

Walt Disney Pictures

The movie opened to decent box-office success, grossing $56.6 million in its opening weekend in the US and Canada compared to “The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe’s” opening gross of $65.6 million. However, according to Reuters, industry analysts had expected a box-office opening in the $80 million range.

A third movie was adapted from the seven-book series by C. S. Lewis, “The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader,” but no plans have been released to continue with the film series.

“Marley & Me: The Puppy Years” follows what happened years before the troublesome dog grew up.

Marley & Me: The Puppy Years scene of marley wearing aviator goggles

A still from “Marley & Me The Puppy Years.”

20th Century Fox Home Entertainment

The straight-to-DVD prequel attempted to capitalize on the movie about the “world’s worst dog,” but didn’t end up winning over those who loved the original movie. Though the movie does feature the adorable Marley and some fun-filled antics, the prequel didn’t have the same heartwarming — and heartbreaking — quality of “Marley & Me.”

The movie scored just 42% with audience members on Rotten Tomatoes.

“Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters” concluded the “Percy Jackson” movie series, despite there being three books left.

logan lerman in percy jackson sea of monsters

A still from “Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters.”

20th Century Fox

Other than devout fans of the “Percy Jackson” book and movie series, many probably don’t know there was a sequel titled “Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters” — or, they might want to forget.

Not even Rick Riordan, the author of the book series, is a fan. 

“I still have not seen the movies, and don’t plan on ever doing so,” the author reportedly wrote on Twitter, USA Today reported in 2020. “I judge them from having read the scripts, because I care most about the story. I certainly have nothing against the very talented actors. Not their fault. I’m just sorry they got dragged into that mess.”

“Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights” came out in 2004, roughly 17 years after Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey’s iconic dance film.

dirty dancing havana nights

A still from “Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights.”

Paramount Pictures

Less of a sequel and more of a reimagining of the original, “Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights” follows the story of a young couple during the Cuban Revolution in 1958. Swayze makes a brief cameo as a dance class instructor, but that’s where the connection to the original movie ends.

The movie was generally well liked by audience members, who gave it a 73% positive score on Rotten Tomatoes. The critic consensus, however, is more negative. It scored 23% and was summed up as a “cheesy, unnecessary remake.”

“The Birds II: Land’s End” is largely forgotten.

The Birds II: Land's End scene of young girl with hair flying in the wind

A still from “The Birds II: Land’s End.”

MCA Television Entertainment

“The Birds II: Land’s End,” released in 1994, follows the same general idea as the first movie released 31 years earlier: Flocks of birds attack innocent townspeople.

The sequel is largely forgotten and has not even racked up enough reviews on Rotten Tomatoes to receive a critic score. The 12% audience approval score should speak for itself, however.

“Legally Blondes” was a direct-to-DVD comedy film starring twin actresses Rebecca and Camilla Rosso.

legally blondes movie still of camilla and rebecca rosso

A scene from “Legally Blondes.”


The film never went to theaters and could potentially be deemed more of a spin-off than a sequel, since it only briefly mentions Elle Woods, the main character of the previous “Legally Blonde” movies. 

Unlike “Legally Blonde,” the “freshest” out of the three movies, and “Legally Blonde 2: Red, White, and Blonde,” this straight-to-DVD movie earned pitiful audience reviews on Rotten Tomatoes and wasn’t even reviewed by enough critics to earn a critic score. It’s safe to say that most “Legally Blonde” fans either forgot — or chose to forget — that this film even exists.

“The Rosso siblings’ personable yet bland work as the central characters essentially exemplifies everything that’s wrong with ‘Legally Blondes,’ as the movie primarily boasts the feel of a soulless, thoroughly irrelevant piece of work that’s never quite able to justify its very existence,” David Nusair of Reel Film wrote.


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