Top 10 Movie Adaptations That No One Asked For

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Top 10 Movie Adaptations That No One Asked For

VOICE OVER: Phoebe de Jeu WRITTEN BY: Thomas O'Connor
Seriously, Hollywood, not everything has to be a movie! For this list, we're looking at adaptations of TV shows, animated classics, video games, and even board games that NO ONE wanted. Our list includes “The Emoji Movie” (2017), “The Lion King” (2019), “Ghost in the Shell” (2017), “Garfield: The Movie” (2004), “Sonic the Hedgehog” (2020), and more! What movie adaptation do YOU think were completely unnecessary? Let us know in the comments!

Disagree with our rank? Check out the voting page for this topic and have your say! WatchMojo.comsuggest/Top+10+Movie+Adaptations+that+No+One+Asked+For
Special thanks to our user ThomasO for suggesting this idea!

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Script written by Thomas O'Connor

Top 10 Movie Adaptations That No One Asked For


Seriously, Hollywood, not everything has to be a movie. Welcome to WatchMojo, and today we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 Movie Adaptations that No One Asked For.

For this list, we’re looking at adaptations of video games, TV series, and even board games that absolutely nobody was clamoring for. We’re specifically looking at adaptations, rather than remakes; however remakes that make significant changes to the medium beyond just the language, actors and so on, like from traditional animation to live action and/or CGI, then they’re eligible.



#10: “Sonic the Hedgehog” (2020) - Upcoming




Back in the 90s, this furry blue speed machine was video game royalty. But after parent company Sega withdrew from the console market and then put out a string of less-than-stellar titles, his star’s fallen faster than, well, Sonic himself. So why Paramount Pictures thought this was the time to bring Sega’s mascot to the big screen is pretty baffling. The confusion only piled up when fans saw Sonic’s design for the movie. After the first trailer dropped, the internet collectively recoiled and burst out laughing, prompting the studio to push back the release while the effects got redone. Seriously, just whose idea was all this? We want names.





#9: “Need for Speed” (2014)




After his breakout turn as Jesse Pinkman in AMC’s “Breaking Bad,” Aaron Paul’s star was very much on the rise. One would imagine that he was getting offers left and right, but for some reason this mediocre adaptation of the hit racing game franchise marked his big screen debut as a leading man. Racing games tend to be pretty low on plot, so why anyone thought to turn the franchise into a movie is beyond us. We guess name recognition is all that matters in Hollywood. Throw in a cast of bland Disney Channel actors and some unimpressive car chases, and the film wasn’t so much “Fast & Furious” as “Slow and Sleepy.” Admit it, did you even remember this movie exists?





#8: “Starsky & Hutch” (2004)




Movies based on nostalgic TV shows were a bit of a trend in the late 90s and early 2000s, with “Charlie’s Angels,” “The Mod Squad,” and others getting big screen versions. An adaptation of this classic buddy cop series must have seemed like a no-brainer, especially with comedy superstars Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson in the lead roles. But despite all the hype and good intentions behind the film, it failed to make a huge splash at the box office, possibly because early 2000s moviegoers just didn’t have enough nostalgic memories of the TV series. It just goes to show that you can’t sell people something they didn’t want in the first place.





#7: “Dark Shadows” (2012)




You can’t accuse Tim Burton of not knowing exactly what he wants to do with his time, but you can accuse him of having very, very specific tastes. Almost nobody remembered this late 60s TV series, a kind of horror soap opera that followed supernatural happenings in the town of Collinsport, but that didn’t stop Burton from bringing it back in movie form. Combine the niche subject material with star Johnny Depp, who audiences had grown increasingly tired of seeing ham it up in white face paint, and it’s no wonder the film took a beating at the box office. We’d ask who this one was for, but we’re pretty sure it was just for Tim Burton himself.







#6: “Garfield: The Movie” (2004)




Here’s yet another case of a property getting a movie adaptation well past the peak of its popularity. Spoiler alert: it won’t be the last, either. The eponymous newspaper comic character had already enjoyed a cartoon series and legions of merchandise by the early 2000s, so there wasn’t much need for a big-budget movie with Bill Murray voicing the title character. By that point, audiences had already started to grow bored with the procession of increasingly stale jokes, and the ill-timed movie didn’t do much to re-endear the corpulent kitty to those who actually saw the film. Heck, Murray himself only took the movie mostly because he misread a name on the screenplay.





#5: “King Arthur: Legend of the Sword” (2017)




The story of King Arthur, Excalibur, and the Knights of the Round Table has been told time and time again on movie screens. While we enjoy a good chivalric legend as much as anyone, it’s hard to argue that Arthur and his saga has gotten a bit stale. Maybe it’s because the story has already been adapted to great effect in everything from John Boorman’s “Excalibur” and even “Monty Python and the Holy Grail,” or maybe that version with Clive Owen is too fresh in everyone’s minds. Either way, the prospect of a new King Arthur movie was met with a resounding ‘meh,’ even with director Guy Ritchie on board. This sword probably should have stayed in the stone.



#4: “Ghost in the Shell” (2017)




Mamoru Oshii’s 1995 original is still held up today as a landmark in the anime genre, with a sequel and several TV series further exploring the rich cyberpunk setting presented by the original manga. The franchise is known and even renowned for its intricate plotting and deep philosophical themes, so fans everywhere collectively grimaced when a live-action Hollywood version was announced. After all, Hollywood isn’t exactly known for its depth. The disastrous casting of Scarlett Johansson as the traditionally Asian lead soured many on this project before it even released, making its failure at the box office less-than-surprising. Can we get our memories of this one erased?







#3: “Battleship” (2012)




Originally a pen-and-paper game dating back to the 1930s, “Battleship” has had players engaging in mock naval warfare for most of a century. The game is fun enough, and Hollywood is no stranger to movies about epic naval battles. But at the same time… really? Whose idea was it to turn this simple board game into a Michael Bay-style action-fest about alien invaders? We’ve played a round or two in our time, and the only aliens we remember are from the “Star Wars” version. As if the bonkers premise wasn’t enough, the movie somehow avoided having anyone utter the franchise’s iconic catchphrase even once in its over two-hour runtime. You had one job, movie!





#2: “The Emoji Movie” (2017)




By this point, the use of the various faces and symbols in instant messaging has become a language in and of itself. Odds are that you either sent or received one within minutes of watching this video! But as fun as these icons are, what exactly made Sony feel like they needed their own movie? At the very least “The Angry Birds Movie” *Xref had a setting, characters, some kind of conflict that could theoretically be translated into a feature film. But all this had is a bunch of yellow faces and a “chocolate ice cream” that wasn’t fooling anybody. Fertile creative ground can be found in unlikely places, but this just felt like a blatant cash-grab.





Before we unveil out number one pick, here are some dishonorable mentions:



“Postal” (2007)




“Max Payne” (2008)




“Get Smart” (2008)




“Holmes & Watson” (2018)






“Battlefield Earth” (2000)






#1: “The Lion King” (2019)




In their ongoing effort to mine our childhood nostalgia for sweet, sweet dollars, Disney have been steadily churning out star-studded live-action remakes of as many of their classic animated films as possible. They all feel unnecessary to various degrees, but the re-do of this classic feel particularly egregious. Done in a photorealistic style, the expressive faces and movements of the original got replaced by something that, while visually stunning, failed to capture the spirit of the source material. There was nothing about the original that warranted a remake, but the Disney remake train isn’t showing any sign of stopping, with upcoming remakes of “Lilo & Stitch” , “Lady and the Tramp”, “The Sword in the Stone”, “The Hunchback of Notre Dame,” and more on the way.
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Rough Night Is Way Better Then The Emoji Movie
The Emoji Movie is not an adaption of anything.