What Happens to Movies After the Star Dies?

In a bizarre coincidence, Lee's father, martial arts legend Bruce Lee, died before his final film, Enter the Dragon, could be released. It was the film that cemented his status as an international superstar, but he didn't live long enough to enjoy his newfound fame.

Studios May Cut Films After Star Dies

After the horrific 1982 death of Vic Morrow and two child actors during the filming of Twilight Zone: The Movie, the scene in which they were killed by a helicopter in a stunt gone horribly wrong was understandably cut from the film.

The untimely deaths of other actors have also led studios to cut scenes that might have taken on a new, unwelcome light. After Phil Hartman was shot and killed by his wife in 1998, a scene in Small Soldiers, in which a soldier aimed at a gun at the actor's head, was deleted prior to release.

A line in To Be or Not to Be in which Jack Benny asks, "What can happen in a plane?" was cut after the film's wisecracking beauty Carole Lombard died in a 1942 plane crash while returning from selling war bonds. The release of the poignant comedy was delayed to allow a period of mourning for the popular star, who was hailed as a national heroine.

Aaliyah was undeniably on the path to superstardom, and her role in The Matrix Reloaded could certainly have shot her career into the stratosphere. Now, sadly, she takes her place along might-have-been actors like Brandon Lee or Selena, who never got to realize their full potential.

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