The decision to change the last Hobbit film’s name got us thinking about big movie name changes that have happened over the years, and whether those changes actually helped or hurt the film. We’ve rounded up 23 of the most memorable changes to decide if the films were named correctly, or if they had it right the first time:
Original name: Fruitvale
Final name: Fruitvale Station
For better or worse? In terms of marketing, this was a smart move, because the story was more easily recognizable with the new title. That being said, it’s a very literal title. Personally, I find Fruitvale more intriguing.
Original name: Tonight, He Comes
Final name: Hancock
For better or worse? Definitely better. Tonight, He Comes sounds weird and horrifying and kind of murder-y.
Original name: Teenage Sex Comedy That Can Be Made For Under $10 Million That Your Reader Will Love But The Executive Will Hate
Second name: East Great Falls High
Final name: American Pie
For better or worse? Worse and then better. The first working title was all about getting people’s attention, and quite frankly, I would’ve gone to see that movie in theaters. But East Great Falls High? No thanks. Pie at least catches my food-loving eye, by my vote still goes to option A.
Original name: The Baster
Final name: The Switch
For better or worse? Worse. The Baster is much more abrupt and crude, but it’s a comedy about artificial insemination, so I say go for it.
Original name: 3,000
Final name: Pretty Woman
For better or worse? Definitely better. Titling the film based on the amount of money he paid for a hooker? Always a bad move, especially for a story about true love and epic romance. Then again, the original film ended with them saying goodbye to each other, so perhaps the title made more sense back then.
Original name: By the Book
Final name: Renaissance Man
For better or worse? Honestly, neither of these excites me.
Original name: Tomorrow Never Lies
Final name: Tomorrow Never Dies
For better or worse? Better. Tomorrow lies a lot, but it never dies.
Original name: Eaters of the Dead
Final name: The 13th Warrior
For better or worse? Worse. Without having seen this movie, I’d be more intrigued by title number one.
Original name: Coma Guy
Final name: While You Were Sleeping
For better or worse? Better. Who wants to watch a movie about a coma guy? Well, I mean, who wants to watch a movie about a coma guy that’s also called Coma Guy?
Original name: Anhedonia
Final name: Annie Hall
For better or worse? Better. Apparently anhedonia is the inability to experience pleasure, which makes it a very fitting and Woody Allen-esque title, but not one that would draw viewers in.
Original name: Scary Movie
Final name: Scream
For better or worse? Better. You can’t title a horror movie Scary Movie, because based on that alone, it immediately becomes less scary.
Original name: This Side of the Truth
Final name: The Invention of Lying
For better or worse? Better. The invention of something is more interesting than another side of something.
Original name: Do Androids Dream Of Electric Sheep?
Final name: Blade Runner
For better or worse? Probably better, because Blade Runner is short and very catchy. However, I’m a little in love with the original title. I mean, do androids dream of electric sheep?!
Original name: The Last First Kiss
Final name: Hitch
For better or worse? Better. For one thing, the original title totally gave away the ending of the movie about a ladies man. Come on, now.
Original name: The Cut-Whore Killings
Final name: Unforgiven
For better or worse? Worse. Who wouldn’t go see The Cut-Whore Killings?
Original name: The Tribal Rites of the Saturday Night
Final name: Saturday Night Fever
For better or worse? Tie. Saturday Night Fever rolls off the tongue, but there’s something amazing about the phrase “tribal rites.”
Original name: Wiseguy
Final name: Goodfellas
For better or worse? Better. Originally named after the book, Wiseguy was forced to change after a TV show was discovered by the same name. But in my opinion, Goodfellas just has a better ring to it.
Original name: Shoeless Joe
Final name: Field of Dreams
For better or worse? Better. Because, what?
Original name: The Invincibles
Final name: The Incredibles
For better or worse? Better. It sounds more kid-friendly, doesn’t it?
Original name: Hunter
Final name: Predator
For better or worse? Better. Hunter sounds like somebody’s name to me, whereas Predator actually strikes fear in my heart.
Original name: Dairy Queens
Final name: Drop Dead Gorgeous
For better or worse? Better. The only way I would’ve seen a movie titled Dairy Queens is if I’d gotten free Dairy Queen ice cream during the screening.
Original name: Revenge of the Jedi
Final name: Return of the Jedi
For better or worse? Debatable. I’m sure Star Wars diehards will have an opinion on this, but from a purely title-based standpoint, both evoke the same feelings for me. Revenge makes things sounds a little harsher, which could be good or bad. This one’s a toss up.
Original name: A Boy’s Life
Final name: E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial
For better or worse? Better. It’s freakin’ E.T., guys.
Which movie title would you have changed, PopWatchers? Let us know in the comments below.