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The Dungeons And Dragons Trilogy You Never Knew Existed

Most fans of genre fiction will tell you that the early 2000s was a golden age for fantasy movies. That's mostly because both the "Harry Potter" and "Lord of the Rings" films were released throughout the 2000s. However, while those franchises have rightfully earned their spots among the all-time greats of the genre, there were quite a few other fantasy flicks released in that period that didn't reach such heights. For instance, if you're among the precious few who bought a ticket to the infamous 2000 misfire, "Dungeons & Dragons," you undoubtedly know it to be one of the most forgettable films of, well, any genre.

Starring Jeremy Irons and Thora Birch, "Dungeons & Dragons" was, of course, adapted from the legendary role-playing game of the same name, and sought to bring the game's sprawling world of wizards, warriors, dragons, and warlocks to life on-screen. As noted by critics and audiences (via Rotten Tomatoes), it failed in that endeavor in virtually every way, and to make matters worse, bombed financially (via Box Office Mojo). 

Frankly, if ever there was a fantasy film that should've killed any possibility of a franchise being made from it, "Dungeons & Dragons" would be it. Instead, the film ended up being just the opening chapter in one of cinema's least likely trilogies.

Believe it or not, there are actually three Dungeons & Dragons movies

Yes, there are actually two sequels to the oh-so forgettable 2000 film adaptation of "Dungeons & Dragons." It should be noted, however, that neither sequel is a continuation of the original film's story, and almost none of the cast members from the first movie returned for the sequels. Nonetheless, if you're wondering why you never got the chance to see 2005's "Dungeons & Dragons: Wrath of the Dragon God" or 2012's "Dungeons & Dragons 3: The Book of Vile Darkness" at your local movie theater, it's because neither film actually played there. 

In fact, "Wrath of the Dragon God" is a made-for-TV movie that first premiered in the United States in 2005 (via IMDb), and showcased all the B-level special effects and soapy acting you might expect from such a production. Although the film isn't exactly a direct sequel to the original, it does follow one of that film's characters in Bruce Payne's vile sorcerer, Damodar. "Wrath of the Dragon God" opens 100 years after Damodar's defeat and follows him as he embarks on a new path towards magical vengeance only to be met with resistance from a fresh wave of heroes. 

As for "The Book of Vile Darkness," it made its quiet premiere in direct-to-DVD fashion in the fall of 2012 (via IMDb). Predictably, "The Book of Vile Darkness" has virtually nothing to do with the first two films in the series aside from it being set in the same realm, and even hardcore fantasy fans would have to admit that there's no real reason for it to exist. Nonetheless, it does. If you're a die-hard "D&D" fan, you may even have a bit of fun watching the film's C-movie madness unfold.