While forever changing the way people look at pie holes, American Pie grossed $102.6 million in 1999. Two years later, the sequel brought in an even more impressive $145.1 million.
Set and released nine years after 1995’sBefore Sunrise, Before Sunset brought back EthanHawke and JulieDelpy for another chance romantic encounter. The second outing added the two leads as screenwriters and grossed $300,000 more than BeforeSunrise’s $5.5 million.
'Die Hard 2: Die Harder'
Die Hard 2 died harder and grossed $34.5 million more than BruceWillis’ $83 million action hit from 1988. The upward trend didn’t continue with Die Hard 3, however.
'From Russia With Love'
The second Bond film to hit theaters and feature SeanConnery as 007 one-upped Dr. No’s $16 million, bringing in $24.8 million. Goldfinger went on to double that success with $51.1 million.
'Harold and Kumar Escape From Guantanamo Bay'
After Harold and Kumar went to White Castle in 2004, the stoner duo racked up $38.1 million — up from the first film’s $18.2 million — while escaping from Guantanamo Bay four years later.
'The Hunger Games: Catching Fire'
Based on SuzanneCollins’ acclaimed book of the same name, 2012’s The Hunger Games brought to life the terror of a world where children fight to the death for others’ entertainment. The film brought in $408 million, and its hot sequel, Catching Fire, found even bigger success, grossing $424.7 million.
'The Karate Kid, Part II'
1984’s The Karate Kid came kicking into theaters, amassing just over $5 million in its opening weekend and ultimately taking in $90.8 million. Two years later, the film’s sequel “waxed on” big-time, grossing $115.1 million.
'Lethal Weapon 2'
Danny Glover andMel Gibson co-starred in the 1987 cop film, LethalWeapon, which grossed $65.2 million. The duo reprised their roles for the 1989 sequel, Lethal Weapon 2, which made more than double the original’s profits, with $147.3 million at the domestic box office.
'Rambo: First Blood Part II'
In the 1982 action hit FirstBlood, SylvesterStallone played John Rambo, a violent and emotionally fragile Vietnam War veteran who, upon his return home, engages in a series of racy encounters with local law authorities. The film amassed $47.2 million, and when Stallone reappeared as Rambo in 1985’s Rambo: First Blood Part 2, the sequel grossed a whopping $150.4 million.
'Terminator 2: Judgment Day'
In his 1984 role as a cyborg assassin from the future, ArnoldSchwarzenegger delivered a line that would recur throughout TheTerminator franchise: “I’ll be back.” The first film grossed $38.4 million, and seven years later, its sequel followed through on the protagonist’s promise with a bang, earning an impressive $204.8 million — nearly five times the first film’s revenue.
'Toy Story 2'
In 1995, Disney magic brought toys to animated life in Toy Story, which grossed $191.8 million. Four years later, the toys made a comeback in Toy Story 2, grossing $245.9 million in a 35-week run.
'Bad Boys 2'
Bad Boys, starring WillSmith,MartinLawrenceand TeaLeoni, hit theaters in 1995 and was MichaelBay’s directorial debut. It domestically grossed $65.8 million. The sequel, which premiered in 2003, grossed a little more than two times that amount, with $138.6 million during its 18-week stint.
'Evil Dead II'
In 1983, the comedic horror film EvilDead debuted and grossed $2.4 million. EvilDeadII premiered in 1987 and garnered $5.9 million during its seven weeks in theaters.
Highlander, whose story is adapted from a UCLA student’s script of the same name, domestically grossed $5.9 million in 1986. The movie’s sequel, which starred Sean Connery, racked up $15.6 million in a three-week period in 1991.
'Mad Max 2'
Mad Max — which starred Mel Gibson in his third film, if we're counting his TV movie in 1979 — was a sci-fi and action movie that grossed $8.8 million in 1980. Mad Max 2 premiered in 1985 with $36.2 million, more than quadrupling the original film’s domestic gross.
'Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me'
The introduction of Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery in 1997 brought in $53.8 million domestically. Two years later, Austin Powers needed no introduction, and The Spy Who Shagged Me scored $206 million at the domestic box office.
'The Dark Knight'
Batman Begins introduced ChristopherNolan's Batman to the world in 2005. Garnering $206.8 million, the film sits at No. 133 on the list of all-time domestic gross totals. In contrast, the 2008 sequel ranks No. 4, grossing a total of $534.9 million domestically.
'Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues'
WillFerrell’s Ron Burgundy and the Channel 4 News Team raked in $85.3 million domestically with the release of Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy. Burgundy’s legend continued nine years later with the release of Anchorman 2 in 2013 and surpassed the original film, grossing $127.4 million.
'Thor: The Dark World'
2011 saw the introduction of the God of Thunder to the Marvel cinematic universe in Thor, which grossed $181 million. Following up with Thor and friends in 2013, Thor: The Dark World grossed $206.4 million.
Who better to judge the best movies of all time than the people who make them? Studio chiefs, Oscar winners and TV royalty all were surveyed as THR publishes its first definitive entertainment-industry ranking of cinema's most superlative. View gallery