When done properly, a movie trilogy can become a much-beloved piece of cinema history. Consider the original Star Wars trilogy or the Back to the Future films. They continue to be fan favorites decades after their initial release, not to mention the fact that they spawned millions of dollars in re-releases, branded merchandise, and/or video games. Actually, Star Wars easily moved into the billions range when it comes to that kind of stuff.
Unfortunately, not all movie trilogies actually become trilogies. We know it’s kind of weird to write an article about movie trilogies with less than three films, but we think you are smart enough to wrap your head around the concept. This list is about movie franchises with two installments already, but that final third piece doesn’t seem likely to ever happen — for a variety of different reasons.
So here at 11 not-quite-complete trilogies that will probably stay unfinished forever.
11. Escape From New York/L.A.
These two movies were released a remarkable 15 years apart, but they both feature Kurt Russell playing one of his most iconic characters — ex-soldier and now federal prisoner Snake Plissken. The first movie was Snake saving the President after he accidentally crash-landed into the island Manhattan, which has been converted entirely into a federal prison. Fifteen years later, Snake faces a similar covert rescue mission on the Island of Los Angeles, which has broken off from the mainland in a massive earthquake and was converted into an island of exiles for sinners.
Unfortunately, there are only so many places for Plissken to escape from. Both Russell and director John Carpenter are in their late 60s, so the adventures of Snake escaping from things are likely over and done with. There were rumors of a remake starring Gerard Butler floating around for a bit, but those seem to have vanished. It’s been over two decades since the last Escape From… movie, and we can’t imagine anyone is overly interested in making a third one at this point.