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Secret movie spin-offs

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Even before Hollywood started titling sequels as if they were Chicago albums, spin-offs were easy to spot: Four Daughters eventually became Four Wives, and Father of the Bride ended up caring for Father’s Little Dividend. But some second-timers have been coy about their sources, either to assert their artistic independence (Jack Nicholson wasn’t about to use Chinatown II for his The Two Jakes) or because the filmmakers thought they had a catchier title. Here are some of the best-kept secret sequels available on video.

A Shot in the Dark (1964)
Released months after The Pink Panther (and 11 years before the next installment, Return of the Pink Panther), this may be the best Clouseau comedy. A

The Color of Money (1986)
Twenty-five years after The Hustler, Paul Newman picked up Fast Eddie Felson’s cue again for Martin Scorsese’s sleek look at modern pool sharking. A-

Bank Shot (1974)
George C. Scott took over the part of the raffish criminal played by Robert Redford in The Hot Rock (both films were based on Donald Westlake novels). B-

Shock Treatment (1981)
A midnight cult didn’t form for this Rocky Horror Picture Show follow-up, in which Brad and Janet compete on a twisted game show. D+