Movies & TV

8 Horror Franchises That Just Won't Die

Stop, stop, it's already dead.
IMAGE Unsplash/Jose Francisco Morales

Last year saw Michael Myers make a triumphant return in Halloween, a direct sequel to the original classic that (smartly) ignored all of the previous sequels.

Not every horror franchise is as successful at refreshing itself though, and there are plenty out there that just don't know when to call it a day. Sure, there's every chance one of the following franchises could deliver Halloween-esque success in the coming years but, at the moment, the odds aren't looking in their favour.

(Note: We've focused on the franchises that have released a new movie in the past year or have solid plans to release a new movie soon).

I Spit on Your Grave

Movies: six

Notorious video nasty I Spit on Your Grave didn’t exactly seem like a franchise starter, although it did have an unofficial sequel called Savage Vengeance in 1993.

Then for some reason it was decided that the world needed a remake of the icky rape-revenge horror, so we got one in 2010 and were treated to two further sequels to the remake in 2013 and 2015.

We thought that was it but now original director Meir Zarchi is back with a direct sequel called I Spit on Your Grave: Deja Vu. Bringing back Camille Keaton as original character Jennifer Hills, the sequel that no one asked for will be out on 23 April.

Child's Play

Movies: eight (and a TV series)

Since the release of Child’s Play in 1988, killer doll Chucky has carved out his own franchise with six sequels, largely led by creator Don Mancini.


The sequels can’t come close to the first movie and are very much for the fans, moving the series firmly into the horror-comedy genre (much like A Nightmare on Elm Street did for Freddy Krueger as the series went on).

Cult of Chucky looked to be the end of it, yet now we’ve got an upcoming TV series called Chucky from Mancini that continues the movie franchise and a completely separate movie reboot of Child’s Play, out on June 21 in the US.

Puppet Master

Movies: 13

Puppet Master is one of those long-running movie franchises that you probably won’t be aware of, even though it’s just released its 13th movie.

The series is like Child’s Play with more killer dolls and the latest movie, Puppet Master: The Littlest Reich, threatened more movies to come as it acted as a reboot of the franchise. It’s one of those cult horror series that has never really received good reviews but kept on going anyway.

It’s been so committed to continuing in the past that there’s one movie (Puppet Master: The Legacy) made up of almost entirely leftover footage from previous movies. Yes, really.


Movies: 10

The original Pinhead, Doug Bradley, hasn’t appeared in the last two movies of the franchise, but producers Dimension Films aren’t letting that get in the way of continuing the Hellraiser franchise.

Reportedly, the ninth movie, Hellraiser: Revelations, was rushed into production to ensure that Dimension Films kept the rights to the series, with the intention of following that up with a remake of the classic original.

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That never transpired and instead we got Hellraiser: Judgment last year which is apparently better than most of the sequels, although that’s not saying much.

Children of the Corn

Movies: 10

Since Stephen King’s short story Children of the Corn was first adapted for the screen, it's led to eight sequels and one TV movie remake.

The sequel, Children of the Corn II: The Final Sacrifice, directly followed on from the original, but there's been little-to-no effort since to link the other sequels to the original other than having creepy kids killing people.

Even more confusingly, after the 2009 TV movie, we've had two more sequels that've had no connection to the TV movie and are both just another sequel loosely inspired by the original movie.

Friday the 13th

Movies: 12 (and a remake on the way)

Halloween made a successful comeback last year, so it was only natural that we soon got word that there would be another reboot of Friday the 13th.

The original series thankfully petered out when it went to space in the tenth movie,Jason X, although we did get the crossover Freddy Vs Jason shortly afterwards. (If you care about chronology, Jason X took place after the crossover).

As they did with so many classic horrors, Platinum Dunes then released a dreadful reboot in 2009 that, fortunately, did so badly that it never led to a sequel.

Resident Evil

Movies: six (and a remake on the way)

Paul WS Anderson’s adaptation of the long-running video game series Resident Evildefinitely slipped more into sci-fi action towards the end of its original series.


However, we’re putting them in here as the original movie definitely tried to be more of a survival horror like the games. Given how the rest of the series had a dramatic decline quality-wise, perhaps the shift in tone wasn’t for the best.

As with most horror franchises, putting the word 'final' in the title of one of your movies doesn’t mean the end, and so it is that Resident Evil: The Final Chapter will be followed by a reboot of the entire series.


Movies: eight

Star Wars and Harry Potter aren’t the only long-running movie franchises that Warwick Davis has had a role in.

Step forward Leprechaun, a horror series about a killer leprechaun who goes to extreme lengths to recover anything stolen from him. This has taken Davis’s Leprechaun to space and to "the hood" as the series, like with most horror franchises, became more of a comedy.

Fortunately for Davis, he got out after Leprechaun: Back 2 Tha Hood, but that didn’t stop there being a reboot (Leprechaun: Origins) and, most recently, a direct-to-TV sequel to the original movie (Leprechaun Returns).

From: Digital SpyThis story originally appeared on edits have been made by the editors.

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