8 pretty much identical movies that came out at the same time
Imagine making a movie then finding out someone is making pretty much the same movie. Frustrating, right?
Surprisingly, it happens all the time in Hollywood. It’s so common that there’s even a term for it: twin movies.
Here are some weirdly similar movies that came out at the same time…
K-9 and Turner and Hooch – 1989
Any aliens studying humanity from afar would be forgiven for thinking that we tried to replace human cops with dogs in 1989, seeing as two movies with that precise idea came out in the same year.
To be fair, there are some differences: K-9’s pooch Jerry Lee is a trained sniffer dog, while Hooch is a slobbery murder witness turned amateur detective. Both are mischievous and generally cause chaos before coming good with some awesome doggy detective work, though.
In the end, Turner and Hooch won the battle of the doggy cops thanks to the power of Hanks.
Armageddon and Deep Impact – 1998
The movies got seriously gloomy as the new millennium loomed, coming up with all kinds of scary ways for the world to end.
Armageddon and Deep Impact focus on what would happen if Earth got smashed by a giant asteroid. Impact is the most grounded of the two (literally), with Armageddon getting the full Michael Bay treatment (i.e. many explosions).
Bay’s bombastic take on doomsday came out on top, grossing $533 million. Deep Impact still made a respectable $349 million, proving the end of the world is big biz.
Antz and A Bug’s Life – 1998
Earth-shattering asteroids weren’t Hollywood’s only interest in 1998 though. They also made two movies about talking ants.
A Bug’s Life and Antz both follow a brave ant as ventures out into the big bad world, although the optimistic Flik is trying to save his while the cynical Z (voiced by Woody Allen) is disillusioned with his.
Despite the similarities and Antz getting to cinemas first, Pixar’s highly anticipated 2nd movie stamped on Antz like an…erm, ant.
Paul Blart: Mall Cop and Observe and Report – 2009
On the surface, Paul Blart and Observe and Report are pretty much the same movie, with both starring a beloved comedy star as a portly mall cop who takes his job too seriously.
However, they’re completely different. Blart is a family-friendly comedy, while Observe and Report is a pitch black comedy about a psychotic mall cop prone to bouts of extreme violence.
In short, you don’t want to get these two mixed up when putting a DVD on for the kids…
Despicable Me and Megamind – 2010
Releasing Despicable Me and Megamind within two months of each other could only be the work of a supervillain trying to confuse moviegoers.
Both movies star a supervillain who dreams of taking over the world, only to turn towards the light after meeting someone nice and coming up against a bigger villain. Vanity Fair even published a guide to help people distinguish between the two.
Both did well at the box office as well, although Despicable Me had the edge thanks to one thing: Minions.
Nearly six years later, Megamind exists as a cult favorite while Despicable Me is a billion-dollar franchise. We’re sure the Megamind team are cooking up a revenge scheme as we speak.
Olympus Has Fallen and White House Down – 2013
The idea shared by Olympus Has Fallen and White House Down – the White House coming under siege from terrorists – seems so obvious that we can’t believe it took until 2013 to happen.
As it happens, we got two White House siege movies in the space of a few months. They even got similar scores on Rotten Tomatoes, with White House Down getting 50% and Olympus scoring 48%.
So how did two practically identical movies end up coming out at the same time? Pure coincidence. Apparently, neither of the writers knew about the other project. Even more weirdly, both scripts were snapped up by studios within a couple of weeks of each other.
Captain America: Civil War and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice – 2016
A superhuman patriot goes to war with a billionaire in a fancy suit over the best way to fight crime. Which movie are we describing?
The main difference between these two is the critical reception: Civil War is considered one of Marvel’s best movies, while Dawn of Justice got a Batman-style beating from critics.
Can you think of any more twin movies? Share them with us in the comments!
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