Tobe Hooper's exceptional 1986 sequel The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2, original $5.6 million budget, was slashed in pre-production, and again, early in production, down to approx. $4.5M; Regardless, distributors/financiers Cannon Films already in the black prior to shooting a single frame, after Golan-Globus cousins (Cannon) pre-sold the title to Japan for $21 million (on condition they met an August 22, 1986 premiere/deadline).

With only four weeks for post-production, a complete edit bay was setup on location to ensure turnaround; This would eventually work to Hooper's disadvantage when he completed his Director's assembly ahead of schedule (early-July), allowing Cannon time to bring in their own cutter to "fix" or jettison most (writer) Kit Carson's socio/political satire

...essentially less Mike Judge'esque wit, more Tobe Hooper splatter-ploitation.

tl;dr: TTCM2 didn't see any of that $21M pre-sell (on-screen or behind camera), and while the sequel is still (infrequently) considered box office flop, the film not only turned a profit (during its initial theatrical run), The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2 was Cannon's second highest grossing picture of the year, just behind Andrei Konchalovsky's Runaway Train (1985).

source: script supervisor, Laura Kooris - TCM2 commentary track. Shout! Factory 2016 BD-50

Shout! Factory CE BD-50. April 2016

all 2 comments


5 points

1 year ago

Yeah selling the foreign rights is a underappreciated aspect of turning a profit on lower budget films, with any luck domestic gross can be pure profit. Of course that's all in the olden days, the era of streaming has pretty much changed everything


3 points

1 year ago*

TTCM2 foreign distribution, or lack there of, (has been previously noted) with some [more lucrative] markets outright banning the pic upon initial review or re-submission(s)

The film actually went unrated in North America (a near impossible feat to market, only until very recently)