Great movie sagas that were canceled after failing at the box office

Whatever those reasons for failure, we are sure that any of the 20 examples that we are going to show you now, have justified their lack of success in some detail that we can objectively detect. Some for quality, others for misunderstanding and the majority for not having lived up to what was expected of them. Of course, we always hit the last bull… right?

Sagas of movies that ended prematurely

Here we leave you 20 films or sagas that tried to perpetuate themselves in theaters with several deliveries and they did not succeed. In some cases they reached a couple of productions (or more) but in others they did not go beyond the first. These are the most prominent.

Dunes (1984)

David Lynch was put at the controls of the first version of the novels of dunes written by Frank Herbert and there were plans to keep adapting new stories but the reception at the box office was not as expected and the production company decided to put an end to future plans. Interestingly, all the indifference it caused in the 80s has turned into admiration over the years. It could have been and it wasn’t.

batman and robin

Warner had many plans for Batman and Robin but the 1997 film was so disastrous (at the box office too) that they decided to completely stop that mess of deliveries that they released in the 90s without apparent sense. Luckily, the fallow years were a fable for the batman because the next thing was batmanbeginswith Christopher Nolan at the controls.

Artemis Fowl

This Disney+ Original Movie wanted to turn the character into Harry Potter from Mickey Mouse Factory but surely you have not seen it, nor heard anyone speak in the same terms as JK Rowling’s story. So yes, for now there will be no more deliveries, the thing remains in standby and the story of humans and magical creatures will have to wait for a better time. A pity because Eoin Colfer’s books are not bad at all.

The Amazing Spider-Man

Despite the two films that were released, there were plans to shoot more but the box office did not respond, despite the drama of Gwen’s death and all the play that could have led to a hypothetical closure of that trilogy (shown slightly in Spider-Man No Way Home). After the success of the last film starring Tom Holland at the end of 2021 it seems that Sony Might Rethink Returning Spider-Man Suit To Andrew Garfield. We will see…

the dark tower

This film was presented as a new franchise that would take us to the universe of the series of books written by Stephen King but, unfortunately, the thing did not catch on and did not go beyond a rather expendable first installment. The fault was, surely, a very flexible adaptation that someone came to think that it could replace the talent of the novels written by the king of terror. Mistake!

Dragon Ball Evolution

What to say about this adaptation of the mythical characters from Akira Toriyama’s anime and cartoon television series. It was disowned and despised by the fans themselves, who abandoned it at the box office, which obviously caused the production company will not consider continuing to make new films, despite the infinity of stories that remained to be told about the character. The truth is that the film was (and is) VERY bad.

The green Hornet

A superhero in a comedy key if the spirit of the original comics is respected would not have to fail, but The green Hornet he did it because his director went too far in his personal vision. The protagonist himself came to confess that his experience in the film was “a nightmare” because the story, the characters and their dialogues were in the hands of the studio… so it was impossible for it to work and make everyone involved happy. The result? A single movie and for home.

John Carter

What to say about one of the biggest fiascoes in Disney history. He had everything to succeed: the director of the first three films of Pirates of the Caribbeana gigantic budget and based on the novels of Edgar Rice Burroughs (creator of Tarzan), little known but which, a priori, should not scare off viewers. Unfortunately no one connected with her, with her appearance, her historical location or the protagonist himself. And there she stayed, with a single delivery that if you see it now… is it really that bad?

Ink heart

Warner’s success with Harry Potteror Peter Jackson with The Lord of the rings, all based on successful novels, led some studios to want to find their own universe of magic and fantasy. Y Ink heart, based on the books by Cornelia Funke, was another attempt. The result goes without saying because many of you may not even have heard of this movie starring Brendan Fraser. So yeah… nobody missed a sequel.


As in the previous case, the success of The Lord of the rings led the studios to delve into the literature to find stories of dragons, fantasy worlds and heroes armed with magic or swords… and Eragon appeared over the horizon, based on some successful novels by Christopher Paolini that began publication in 2002. Not even the presence of Jeremy Irons managed to save this film that lies in the well of the sagas that could have been… and were not.

I am number four

Practically a decade ago, the studios launched themselves to buy rights to juvenile literary sagas and, as a result of this trend (with the Divergent, The Hunger GamesThe Fifth Wave, etc.), we have this I am number four that It was nothing more than an anecdote on the billboard of theaters. Nine human-like aliens arrive on Earth to hide… it is the starting point of a series of seven books (The Lorien Legacies) that had no further impact on the history of cinema.

The Chronicles of Narnia

CS Lewis was one of the great writers of the 20th century. and practically a contemporary of JRR Tolkien, who also wrote his own series of books based on a fantasy universe. Although his quality allowed him to fill four unevenly successful films with life and stories, unfortunately he did not go beyond that and a good part of the entire literary universe was left in the dry dock, waiting for better times. a pity

Green Lantern

We could say that “another superhero” but no. Green Lantern is one of the most followed and known by DC fans who saw in this film a beginning for a series of stories based on these space vigilantes. The problem is that the film was so expendable that nobody waited for someone to shoot a sequel. a pity


The phenomenon of children’s literature and hits like those of The Hunger Games, filled the billboard with these stories of young kids who face the titanic powers with the intention of defeating them. Although the series Divergent He came to have three films, four were planned but after the fiasco of the third, loyal divergent, which raised a little more than half of the first, the projects were finished. So with a scenario like this, why risk losing more than just prestige? And worst of all, we were left without seeing how the thing ended (unless you read Veronica Roth’s books).


The Paramount film sought to have some continuity as a small saga of adventures based on the characters of Clive Cussler but the blow of the first one was astonishing: it lost 122 million dollars and any possibility of seeing Mattew McConaughey and Penélope Cruz on the big screen living on the edge in the style of Indiana Jones and Marion Ravenwood was quickly eliminated (apart from the HUGE distances ).

Percy Jackson

Surely you know what happened to these movies that only two were released when there were plans for more. Especially if we take into account that there are seven novels based on the character, or on the universe, imagined by Rick Riordan. The problem with these films is that the production company turned their cape into a coat and changed key elements such as the age of the protagonists and other elements that sought to connect with the teenage audience. Obviously, such a heresy ended up as it deserved, in the garbage can… although now Disney + prepares an exclusive series for its streaming service.

A Series of Unfortunate Events by Lemony Snicket

In 2004, a film starring Jim Carrey came to theaters that had everything to succeed. A gripping story based on the books of A Series of Unfortunate Events written by Daniel Handler, Lemony Snicket and Brett Helquist, of which there are more than a dozen published installments and for which everyone thought that a promising future was waiting for him in theaters. But no, the film did not have the expected reception and everything was there. There were no more plans.

Ender’s Game

Published in 1985, Ender’s Game is one of those literary wonders that have fascinated young over the last 35 years and that someone, with good judgment, adapted to the cinema in 2013. Moreover, if successful, there were four other books waiting that together they would be part of the so-called ender saga. Not even the presence of Harrison Ford could reverse the problem of an adaptation that hardly conveyed anything, unlike some books that are vibrant and much deeper than what was seen on the big screen.

The Golden Compass

Phillip Pullman’s books dark matter are the basis of this film for which there were huge plans for the future, as a kind of saga at the height of, at that time, The Chronicles of Narnia or (further) The Lord of the rings. The reception was rather lukewarm, it had some repercussion and grossed almost double what it cost, but it did not give it enough momentum to have new installments. Right now you have a series based on the same texts, called dark matter which premiered in 2019 on HBO Max and is in its second season.

fantastic four

And we’ll save “the mother of all canceled movie franchises” for last. because fantastic four He hasn’t failed once…but twice!! She did it with her first attempt 17 years ago now, although, despite being bad enough already, she gave it to count in 2007 with a continuation (against Silver Surfer), and again failed miserably with the remake, demake or whatever from 2015. Three movies in total, two attempts to revive this group of heroes, and as many cancellations. So yes, She is the champion of champions.

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