Let’s dive back into the vaults again to see what’s out there that we may or may not know of, in sequels and prequels to movies.
The 1993 childrens movie, based on a killer whale (Keiko) being taken from its natual habitat and thrown into a Seaworldesque theme park. While making a human friend with Jesse (Jason James Richter), Willy is desperate to escape and get back home. The movie was a major success, with help of Michael Jackson releasing “Will You Be There” as the theme song. To cash in on the success, a sequel Free Willy 2: The Adventure Home, was released in 1995. The original cast appeared in the 2nd movie, and Michael Jackson returned for the soundtrack. Even the original killer whale signed the dotted line. This again was a commercial success, so the movie studio decided to release Free Willy 3: The Rescue, in 1997. Jason James Richter and Keiko returned once again for the 3rd sequel. However, it was a major commercial flop. But, as most studios do, over 10 years later, tap into a source of franchises and try and reboot the story. Free Willy 4: Escape From Pirate Cove, will star Bindi Irwin and will be released around 2010. Sadly, Keiko the Killer Whale, died in 2003 from pneumonia. Jason James Richter is still around…
The Land Before Time
This animated franchise was bloody huge when the first movie was released in 1988. It was a merchandising dream. I still remember Pizza Hut having hand puppets of Littlefoot, Cera and the rest of the gang. It was a box office success, especially with Steven Spielberg and George Lucas having their fingers in the pie. However, this was the only film that was released at the cinema. The following were straight to video:
- The Land Before Time II: The Great Valley Adventure (1994)
- The Land Before Time III: The Time of the Great Giving (1995)
- The Land Before Time IV: Journey Through the Mists (1996)
- The Land Before Time V: The Mysterious Island (1997)
- The Land Before Time VI: The Secret of Saurus Rock (1998)
- The Land Before Time VII: The Stone of Cold Fire (2000)
- The Land Before Time VIII: The Big Freeze (2001)
- The Land Before Time IX: Journey to Big Water (2002)
- The Land Before Time X: The Great Longneck Migration (2003)
- The Land Before Time XI: Invasion of the Tinysauruses (2004)
- The Land Before Time XII: The Great Day of the Flyers (2006)
- The Land Before Time XIII: The Wisdom of Friends (2007)
Only Spielberg and Lucas had dibs on the first one. The rest – blame the studios.
In 1997, Starship Troopers gave Denise Richards the “She’s hot! I want to see her topless!” image. We didn’t see her boobs in that movie as Dina Meyer had the cards on that one. Many horny teens had to wait a year until 1998, when the sex-crime thriller Wild Things came out. The “it” girl of 1998 Neve Campbell as a co-star, sexed up the screen with Campbell and Matt Dillon in a threesome. We saw Richards topless, but Campbell mainly wore a singlet, only to be covered by Dillon when the singlet was removed. Being a huge success, two sequels were released, straight to DVD. Wild Things 2 was released in 2004, and Wild Things 3: Diamonds In The Rough, in 2005. Both sequels had the exact sexual theme, with the dark mystery and conspiracies , but just with different actors/characters. Quite repetitive. Here’s a link for you – Dina Meyer, appears in Wild Things 3.