Sequels – Successful and Unsuccessful: Lord of the Rings Sequels and Superman IV

By: Sean Sporman
By: Sean Sporman

Two of 2014's biggest films so far have been sequels. This week, News 4 This Morning is taking a look back at some of the most successful films that follow up on a predecessor, and some of the films that have a less stellar reputation as a sequel.

The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of The Rings, directed by Peter Jackson, was an adaptation of the first book of the The Lord of the Rings trilogy by J.R.R. Tolkien. Some book-to-movie series such as The Inheritance Cycle and His Dark Materials, have had one film made, but not the entire book series adapted successfully to film. The Lord of The Rings, on the other hand, was both a massive critical and financial success, with The Two Towers and The Return of the King also being a big success. In fact, the success of this trilogy led another Tolkien Middle-Earth novel, The Hobbit, being adapted into a trilogy as well.

The first two Superman films featuring Christopher Reeve were both a critical and financial success. The third film, Superman III, is held in less regard due to a more comedic focus, including Richard Pryor as an antagonist. Superman IV: The Quest for Peace would be the last Superman film starring Reeve. The low-budget production was criticized for dodgy special effects, for one. It is on many of the worst sequel lists of critics and movie buffs. The film effectively ended the Superman franchise for many years, until 2006 with Superman Returns. Although Superman Returns was a direct sequel to the Reeve Superman films, it ignored III and IV entirely!

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