13 movies with the longest production process, up to decades

13 Movies With The Longest Production Process, Up To Decades

Behind the movies we often enjoy, there must be a long and complicated process to go through. Making a movie is not an easy process because the manufacturing process itself involves carrying out planning, shooting, post-production all the way to release. The movie you usually watch lasting 1-2 hours turns out to be quite a long and complicated manufacturing process.

In the filmmaking process, sometimes a movie can take anywhere from six months to a year. But sometimes it can also increase to several months if the film produced is not considered ideal. Nonetheless. there are some films that take years to produce, you know, what are they? Here are some movies with the longest production process.

13 movies with the longest production process

1. Chronos

Films With The Longest Production Process

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Cronos is a Mexican independent horror film written and directed by Guillermo del Toro and starring Federico Luppi and Ron Perlman.

Making this film through a journey that is not an easy one, it took Del Toro eight years to finish this Kronos film. This was not because filming was difficult, but because of a lack of funds to stop production on Kronos.

To complete this film, Del Toro borrowed money from the bank to have all the production processes completed because he thought this film would be a masterpiece. Thanks to Del Toro’s strong determination, the players were also excited and willing to cut their salaries. At the end of the day, this movie isn’t very loud, but Kronos is the embryo of the phenomenal Hellboy movie.

2. roar

Films With The Longest Production Process

photo via screenroomkingston.com

The film with the next longest production process is Roar (1981). The process took a long time, not because you want to see the entirety, this film directed by Noel Marshall caused the cast and crew to suffer serious injuries. That’s because they filmed with biased animals like lions.

Furthermore, the footage of this movie was also lost due to the location where the shooting was hit by heavy flooding. Tragically, the lions that are the central figures in this film turn away and die. As a result of this series of disasters, the process of making the movie Roar was hampered. In the end, the film was reworked and hit theaters 11 years later.

But unfortunately this movie is considered less attractive but the message of this movie is positive because wildlife protection is the main line of this movie.

3. Boy

Films With The Longest Production Process

photo via imdb.com

Films that tell the story of a person’s life journey from childhood to adulthood are not new. In general, the production team will use different actors to portray the different age stages.

Tapo is different from the movie BoyHood, which was directed by Richard Linklater, where he shoots the film according to the actor’s age from children to adults. This BoyHood highlights Mason’s life journey from age 6 to 18.

For 12 years, the actors in this movie film every week. Although it takes a long time, Mason’s growth over time actually feels very natural.

4. Time Travel

Films With The Longest Production Process

photo via imdb.com

Released in 2016, this film has been in production since the 1970s, making it one of the films with the longest production process. At least Voyage of Time took 13 years to complete the film.

5. Mughal-e-azam

Films With The Longest Production Process

photo via imdb.com

Next comes Mughal-e-azam, a film originating in India that is one of the films with the longest production process. The film was made in 1946 and released in 1960, if you reckon it took at least 14 years to make. This movie also had time to stop because of the separation incident in India.

6. Avatar

Films With The Longest Production Process

photo via imdb.com

Avatar is one of the films produced by James Cameron, this film in the year it was released managed to shake the world with its impressive visual quality at the time. It turns out that this Avatar movie requires a 15-year production process to produce Avatar that lives up to James Cameron’s wishes.

There’s something interesting about this Avatar movie, where work on the film’s script had begun before Titanic (1997) was released in 1994, to be precise. Back then, technology wasn’t as advanced as it is today, so Jaime Cameron decided not to rush to work on Avatar. Avatar finished filming in 2006 and the years-long production process paid off.

The movie Avatar won the Oscars for Best Art Direction, Best Cinematography and Best Visual Effects in 2010.

7. Lake of Fire

Films With The Longest Production Process

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One of the movies with the longest production process was released in 2006. Actually this movie is a documentary that Tony Kaye made with his own money. At least he spent around $6 million to produce this Lake of Fire movie. Not only does it cost a lot, but the time it takes to make this film is also quite long, around 16 years.

8. Coffee and Cigarettes

Films With The Longest Production Process

photo via imdb.com

It took about 18 years to complete the film, titled Coffee and Cigarettes. This film is a collection of several stories where the first segment or part of the film began shooting in 1986 and the other six were completed in 2003,

9. Plain

Films With The Longest Production Process

photo via mubi.com

If the above movies take about 8-18 years, this Tiefland movie will blow you away. Tiefland film takes about 20 years of film production.

The scripting process has been going on since 1934. What makes the production process for this film so time-consuming is that Tiefland was made during WWII, so the filming process was delayed several times.

When the filming process was completed, the reel of this film was taken away by the French army to have it partially damaged. As a result, the team had to re-shoot. It took quite a while and various difficulties approached, the worst thing is that this movie was not very famous in its time.

10. Twenty years later

Films With The Longest Production Process

photo via letterboxd.com

This film is in keeping with the title, where Twenty Years Later was produced for 20 years. Twenty years later it was first worked on in 1964 and was completed in 1984.

This documentary tells the story of the murder of João Pedro Teixeira, leader of a farmers’ organization who was murdered by a local farmer. This film took a long time to produce because many of the crew and actors were arrested because of the political interests surrounding this case.

11. The thief and the shoemaker

Films With The Longest Production Process

photo via imdb.com

Animated films are known for having a long production process, as there are several things that must be prepared for the film to have good results. But it is different from the animated film titled The Thief and the Shoemaker, where the production process took almost 29 years.

The director of this film, Richard Williams, started the development process of this animated film in 1964. However, due to funding problems, this film was not rushed. When Williams won the 1989 Oscar for “Best Visual Effects” for his work on Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988).

It received funding and distribution from Warner Bros., but unfortunately Williams was unable to complete it as per his agreement with Warner Bros. Due to time and funds exceeding the initial goal, Warner Bros. shifted production of the film from Williams to Fred Calvert in 1992. In the end, The Thief and The Cobbler was released in 1993.

12. The Man in the Mirror

Films With The Longest Production Process

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The film was released in 2008, but has been running since 1970. Man in The Mirror tells the story of a group of people living on the streets of New York. This film also portrays the former twin WTC buildings that currently no longer exist. The film The Man in the Mirror is one of the films with the longest manufacturing process, which is 38 years.

13. The Other Side of the Wind

Films With The Longest Production Process

photo via imdb.com

Finally, there is The Other Side of the Wind, this film has been in production since 1970 and released in 2018. The production process of The Other Side of the Wind took up to 48 years.

The production process of this film was interrupted in 1971 because the director, Orson Welles, was in debt. Then the production process resumed in 1973, but again Wlles ran into financial problems so that the filming process could only be completed in 1976. Not finished in the filming process, the production of this film again faced other problems.

During the editing process, Welles had to face legal problems for using Mehdi Bousheri’s funding in 1979. Once again, the film The Other Side of the Wind ran into trouble and was increasingly neglected when Welles died in 1985. After their legal process ended, Netflix was finally willing to fund the process of completing this film and obtaining the distribution rights in 2017.

This is a film series with the longest production process in decades. The length of the production process for this film was caused by several factors, some of which were insufficient funds and other events. From the line of 13 movies above, which one did you watch?


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