What would the headlines about Joe Dirt 2 See film here had the movie failed at the box office? “Throw some dirt on David Spade’s career”? Studios often make the mistake of releasing a sequel that nobody asked for (Highlander 2) and the results can be embarrassing. Sometimes the issue is that a movie’s audience has outgrown its humor, or a star’s appeal has long since passed. Either way Sony Pictures may have found a way to resurrect older franchises and make money without investing too much into distribution. The answer is to not distribute it.
For years small studios and even major ones have had direct to video films and often sequels to iconic movies. Some examples are Lion King 2 1/2 an almost Rosencrantz And Guildenstern Are Dead retelling of the Lion King, or The Little Mermaid 2. Movies like that met the needs of audiences that just could not take happily ever after as the end. This sort of film making is not reserved for Disney or animated fare. Though in many cases live action movies may not be able to bring in original stars the American Pie Series for instance may have had 3 major theatrical movies but there were a number of direct to video sequels. Starship Troopers had a few followups also.
The rise of streaming as a medium promises to provide a new platform for such fare going forward. Joe Dirt was a movie begging to be released on the format and due to the cult appeal of the character and a dedicated fanbase for star David Spade, the film has been the most successful venture for Crackle yet. Streaming also allowed the controversial “The Interview” to be available to mas audiences when distribution of the feature became the center of terrorist threats. More films makers may well take this direction as streaming based TV shows prove to be successful and the viewers will win out big time.