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SNEAKS '06

Back for round two, or five ...

Clouseau. Santa. The X-Men. Big Momma. Make way for the sequels, fast and furious.

January 15, 2006|Elena Howe

SEQUELS are a Hollywood mainstay, and often for all the right reasons. Who can deny the artistry of "The Godfather: Part II"? Or even the delightful existentialism of "Toy Story 2"? Of course, for every one of those achievements there's a "Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo" waiting in the wings.

With their brand recognition and built-in audiences, sequels aren't going anywhere. In fact, some of them are among this year's most anticipated releases, what with "Mission: Impossible III," "Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest" and "Superman Returns" all scheduled to hit theaters before summer's end.

Here's a look at the genesis of some of the sequels planned for the year.

-- Elena Howe

* Big Momma's House, 2000

* Big Momma's House 2, 2006

Studio: Fox

Box office: $117.6 million

Plot, Part 2: Big Momma goes undercover as a nanny in a dysfunctional household, all in the name of national security.

What were they thinking? When in doubt, surround your lead with kids. Can you say "Kindergarten Cop," "Daddy Day Care" and "The Pacifier"?

Original film's tagline: This FBI agent is going undercover ... and he's concealing more than a weapon.

Potential new tagline: What do you want, originality or a man in a dress?

**

* The Pink Panther, 1963

* A Shot in the Dark, 1964

* The Return of the Pink Panther, 1975

* The Pink Panther Strikes Again, 1976

* Revenge of the Pink Panther, 1978

* Trail of the Pink Panther, 1982

* Curse of the Pink Panther, 1983

* Son of the Pink Panther, 1993

* The Pink Panther, 2006

Studio: MGM/Columbia

Total box office: $164.5 million

Plot, Part 9: In this prequel, detective Clouseau must solve a murder and find out who stole the infamous Pink Panther diamond.

What were they thinking? "The Curse of the Second Cousin Twice Removed of the Pink Panther Will Return and Get His Revenge on the Trail ... Again" in 2008!

Original film's tagline: A madcap frolic of crime and fun.

Potential new tagline: A madcap attempt to revive a franchise 13 years later.

**

* Basic Instinct, 1992

* Basic Instinct 2: Risk Addiction, 2006

Studio: Sony

Box office: $117.7 million

Plot, Part 2: A psychiatrist treating novelist Catherine Tramell is lured into a seductive game.

What were they thinking? Sharon Stone's still pretty hot ... this might just work.

Original film's tagline: A brutal murder. A brilliant killer. A cop who can't resist the danger.

Potential new tagline: She wears that dress again.

**

* The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, 1974

* The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2, 1986

* Leatherface: The Texas Chainsaw Massacre III, 1990

* The Return of the Texas Chainsaw Massacre, 1994

* The Texas Chainsaw Massacre:

The Beginning, 2006

Studio: New Line

Total box office: $125.4 million

Plot, Part 5: After a car accident, two young couples are taken to a secluded house, where really bad things happen.

What were they thinking? We're at No. 5. Do we really need to justify ourselves?

Original film's tagline: Who will survive and what will be left of them?

Potential new tagline: Who will care if the plot doesn't really hold up?

**

* Ice Age, 2002

* Ice Age 2: Meltdown, 2006

Studio: Fox Animation

Box office: $176.4 million

Plot, Part 2: As the melting ice threatens their valley, Sid, Manny and Diego have to warn the other inhabitants.

What were they thinking? It's got a better shot at an Oscar than "Garfield 2."

Original film's tagline: The coolest event in 16,000 years.

Potential new tagline: The coolest event in 16,004 years.

**

* Scary Movie, 2000

* Scary Movie 2, 2001

* Scary Movie 3, 2003

* Scary Movie 4, 2006

Studio: Weinstein Co.

Total box office: $338.3 million

Plot, Part 4: It's a slasher spoof; who needs a plot?

What were they thinking? It's time to market another version of that ubiquitous Halloween costume.

Original film's tagline: No mercy. No shame. No sequel.

Potential new tagline: Did we say no sequel? We meant mo' sequels.

**

* X-Men, 2000

* X2, 2003

* X3, 2006

Studio: Fox

Total box office: $372.2 million

Plot, Part 3: The X-Men face down the mutant Brotherhood as a cure for mutations is found.

What were they thinking: Mutant money is still good money.

Original film's tagline: Join the evolution.

Potential new tagline: They're like Furbys all grown up ... and very angry.

**

* The Fast and the Furious, 2001

* 2 Fast 2 Furious, 2003

* The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift, 2006

Studio: Universal

Total box office: $271.7 million

Plot, Part 3: To avoid jail time, a street racer is sent to live in Tokyo, where he discovers drift racing.

What were they thinking: Hot rods and hot bods -- how can we miss?

Original film's tagline: If you have what it takes ... You can have it ALL!

Potential new tagline: If you have the attention of young male moviegoers, you have it ALL!

**

* The Santa Clause, 1994

* The Santa Clause 2, 2002

* The Santa Clause 3, 2006

Studio: Buena Vista

Total box office: $284.1 million

Plot, Part 3: Santa squares off against Jack Frost, who has his own plans for Christmas.

What were they thinking? In these times of strife, the world needs all the love and magic it can get. And if that means Tim Allen in a fat suit again, so be it.

Original film's tagline: This Christmas, the snow hits the fan.

Potential new tagline: Next Christmas, we're counting on big DVD sales.

Domestic box office totals include all films in the series. Source: boxofficemojo.com.

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