Have you heard the one about the old guy who tinkered with soda pop formulas in his garage? He invented one concoction that he liked so much he named it “6 Up.” But just before he could market it, he died in a freak Mentos and soda pop explosion. His family and friends found some comfort in the tragedy, though. They’ll always remember him as the man who came THIS close to inventing 7 Up.
They’re known as “One Letter Off Movie Titles.”
There have been hundreds of famous examples that stretch all the way back to the Silent Era and up until this very day. Have you ever heard of The Gold Tush? How about The Great Brain Robbery? Girth Of A Nation? Didn’t think so…
Since then, there have been hundreds of Hollywood blockbusters raking in billions of dollars at the box office. But, for every hit, there are a hundred misses, which, but for the placement of one crucial letter, could have brought their makers undreamed of fame and fortune.
So, here’s what we think might just be the best (or worst?) One Letter Off Movie Titles and the log lines that made them (in)famous:
The Men Who Stare At Coats: The CIA trains a secret group of psychics who have the unique skill of convincing their wives they don’t really need a mink.
The Beer Hunter: three steel worker buddies go off to war in search of the coldest beer in the world. Only one returns with all his marbles and body parts. And he’s still very thirsty.
Jurassic Pork: A well meaning scientist tries to cover up the fact that his hog farm theme park idea has taken a deadly turn. Will he roast for it?
Mortal Wombat: Three Australian martial arts experts are lured to the Outback to battle a fierce, hairy creature bent on destroying humanity. Starring Alec Baldwin’s chest.
Lawn Of The Dead: James Whitmore comes back from the afterlife to terrorize a suburban mall full of Miracle-Gro mulch fanatics.
Apocalypse Cow: Martin Sheen is sent into the jungle to bring back the bloated actor who used to be Marlon Brando for a remake of A Streetcab Named Desire.
HoboCop: A homeless man is brought back from near death to battle crime after technicians repair his wounds with cardboard strips from an old refrigerator box.
The Lizard Of Oz: A Kansas farm girl gets bopped on the noggin and wakes up in a colorful world full of liars, tigers and bores. Luckily, she does get one good bit of advice: Pay no attention to the iguana behind the curtain.
Schindler’s Lisp: The story of a man suffering from a severe speaking disorder who tried to help his fellow German Jewish citizens during World War II. If only he could have found the words…
And the top One Letter Off Movie Title of all time?
The Codfather: An epic saga chronicling the rise and fall of a powerful mafia Don and his three sons as they battle for control of New York City’s thriving, but corrupt, mermaid filet industry. Will they end up sleeping with the fishes?
It’s A Wonderful Lime
Ronnie and Clyde
Close Encounters Of The Third Rind
The Dork Knight
Some Like It Not
Dr. Strangelove or How I Learned To Stop Worrying And Love The Boob
Ferris Bueller’s Lay Off
The Umpire Strikes Back
One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Vest
2001: A Spice Odyssey
When Harry Met Wally
And, of course…
The Hound of Music!
— Reid Moore
Reid Moore, a freelance blogger, retired from the U.S. Air Force and lives in Riverside, California. His work has appeared online since 1996. So, naturally, in his spare time, he can be found taking a well-deserved nap.