10 Times Movies Recycled Footage From Other Hollywood Movies

By now, you must be used to Hollywood directors taking influences from other movies and series or shamelessly recreating the scenes. But this list isn’t about stealing ideas, it’s about stealing/ borrowing the same clip from other films. There can be various reasons behind it. Sometimes, the stringent production budget forces the director to take this route to cut set costs. Other times, they want to reuse a clip as a flashback where the actor was younger. You’ll be surprised to know how most of the movies are popular but got away with reusing old footage from other projects. Find out 10 times movies reused footage from other Hollywood movies.

Transformers: Dark of the Moon

“Transformers” may be a big-budget film, but even Michael Bay tried to save money wherever it was possible. For one of the chase scenes, Bay took footage from his lesser-known movie “The Island” and used CGI to shoot one of the Transformers into it.

Game of Death

Bruce Lee was in the middle of directing, producing, and starring in the martial arts crime “Game of Death” when he suddenly passed away. This brought a team of directors together to brainstorm on how to finish the unfilmed scenes of the movie. They eventually changed the whole script and cast Yuen Biao and Kim Tai-chung to play Bruce Lee’s character as Bruce Lee. His character used disguises throughout the film since none of the actors looked like him. For close-ups and action scenes, the film used old clips from Bruce Lee’s other films like “The Way of the Dragon”.

The Old Man & the Gun

Movies Recycled Footage From Other Movies
Movies Recycled Footage From Other Movies

Robert Redford played the charismatic criminal, Forrest Tucker who was infamous for escaping prison countless times. In order to show a montage of Tucker’s previous escapes during his younger years, the director took clips of Redford’s films “The Chase” and “The Sting” which were based on jailbreak.

The Jungle Book

Not “The Jungle Book”, Disney has reused and recycled its animated footage in several movies. Look at the resemblance between Baloo from “The Jungle Book” and Little John from “Robin Hood”. We doubt if Disney did this for budget constraints. In fact, according to Disney animators, they just wanted to play safe by using a familiar style.

Raiders of the Lost Ark

The high-budget of the film made it hard for George Lucas to convince the studios to invest in the project. As he finally found Paramount Pictures, Lucas tried his best to cut down costs wherever possible. So, he reused a scene from “Lost Horizon” and inserted it for the part where the Indiana Jones flight route over the Himalayas was shown on the map.

The Shootist

Movies Recycled Footage From Other Movies
Movies Recycled Footage From Other Movies

The Shootist was about an aging cowboy, J.B. Books played by John Wayne who is treating his cancer. As the movie switches back to flashbacks to highlight Books’ aging through the years, it uses clips from Wayne’s earlier movie such as Red River, El Dorado, etc.

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

Director Gareth Edwards was going through archives at George Lucas’s Skywalker Ranch where he came across some unused footage. One of the footage was Battle of Yavin in Star Wars: A New Hope featuring pilots Jon Vander and Garven Dreis. Edwards reused this footage and digitally changed it into Battle of Scariff for Rogue One.

The Limey

The Limey is about an ex-con named Wilson who flies all the way to Los Angeles from England to investigate the mystery of his daughter’s death. Instead of using a younger actor who looked like Terrence Stamp, director Steven Soderbergh bought rights to “Poor Cow” and used some of its clips to show Wilson’s past.

Kingdom of Heaven

Ridley Scott had poured his heart and sweat on “The Kingdom of Heaven” which was originally 194- minutes long. However, he had to cut out 50 minutes of the film at the producers’ command. Neither Scott nor the audience was happy with the theatrical release and the film ended up losing a lot at the box office. He decided to release the director’s cut but had a limited budget that he couldn’t cross. In order to shoot the sea storm, they used a clip from “White Squall” and combined it with a digitally created wrecked ship.

Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure

Movies Recycled Footage From Other Movies
Movies Recycled Footage From Other Movies

To meet the small budget of the adventurous movie, the team had to rely on old footage. Bill and Ted used a time-travel machine to travel through time and learn about important historical events to pass their exams. One of their chapters included a trip to Austria to witness Napoleon’s invasion. Instead of traveling to Austria or recreate the expensive war scene, they recycled the episode from King Vidor’s “War and Peace”.

Back to top button