When some movies are released, it is no surprise that they are a big hit with the public. They have an outstanding cast, an excellent script, an experienced director, and a big budget to create and promote the movie. On the other hand, there are movies that nobody thinks will become successful. Here are some of the movies that came out of nowhere to achieve huge success.
1. The Blair Witch Project
One of the best-known surprising hit movies is The Blair Witch Project. This horror movie made the sub-genre of found-footage hugely popular. Although it only cost $600,00 to make this 1999 movie, it grossed $248.6 million worldwide. This was partly due to an aggressive marketing campaign. The Blair Witch Project was written, directed and edited by Daniel Myrick and Eduardo Sanchez. It starred Heather Donahue, Michael C. Williams, and Joshua Leonard.
2. American Graffiti
American Graffiti was the directorial debut of George Lucas who is now one of the best-known men in the film industry. This 1973 movie cost just $777,000 to make, yet it grossed $140 million worldwide. This helped to launch George Lucas’ career and he went on to create the Star Wars and Indiana Jones franchises. Starring in this film were Richard Dreyfuss, Ron Howard, and Paul Le Mat.
3. Mad Max
Mad Max was a surprise hit for many reasons. First, it was the directorial debut of George Miller. Second, there was a budget of just $350,000 available to make this film. Finally, Mel Gibson played the leading role and he was completely unknown. In fact, he hadn’t even intended to audition for the movie. Despite these factors, the movie grossed $100 million worldwide which was a large sum of money for a film released in 1979. It also launched a film franchise and Mad Max: Fury Road is still going today.
4. Paranormal Activity
Even the director of Paranormal Activity, Oren Peli, didn’t expect the movie to come to anything. He had a budget of just $15,000 to make the film. Furthermore, there was no script and the film featured non-actors. Armed with just a video camera, he had a house as the sole location for filming. Surprisingly, the movie was a phenomenal hit and grossed $197 million worldwide. Off the back of this movie’s success, four sequels and a spin-off were made. These also had a low-budget but achieved great success.
5. Slumdog Millionaire
Compared to some other films on this list, Slumdog Millionaire had a relatively decent budget of $15 million. However, by film industry standards, this is still a pitiful amount. Originally, the film wasn’t well received in North America and it only had a limited release. After the film was nominated for ten Academy Awards, of which it won eight, it was granted a wide release in North America. This critically acclaimed movie grossed $377 million worldwide making a profit of $362 million. The movie is directed by Danny Boyle and starred Dev Patel and Freida Pinto.
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