You decide to make your own movie, so you do whatever you can to get a video camera, some of your friends to be the actors, and props to make the movie more believable. However, your movie project hits a few snags in the filming process, so Hilarity Ensues; the actors forget their lines or screw up their parts, props are always falling over at inopportune times, the equipment is clearly visible while filming, etc. It turns out that making a movie isn't as easy as it looks at all. Expect to see loads and loads of Special Effects Failure, though the final product often ends up So Bad, It's Good. Compare: Troubled Production, the larger-scale professional version of this. Contrast: School Play.
Examples:Anime and Manga
- The first (airing order) episode of The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya shows the results of this, while an arc in season two shows the process, as does the second Light Novel.
- Richie Rich once tried to make his own western, with Freckles and Peewee as actors. The reviewers hailed it as a great comedy film, but Richie wanted a drama.
- This is the basic plot of "Wild Movie" from Calvin and Hobbes: The Series - Calvin attempts to make a Stupendous Man movie.
- Son of Rambow: A couple of kids remake First Blood.
- In Super 8, the characters try to make a movie near a train station. Which then explodes.
- More or less the plot of Be Kind Rewind, as the main duo must hastily put together the films that has been ruined in the videostore.
- Raiders of the Lost Ark: The Adaptation was one of these. A bunch of teenagers took about a decade of summers to hack together a nearly shot-by-shot remake of Raiders of the Lost Ark. They had to make five or six giant boulders and nearly burned down the house where they filmed. On the other hand, the final film is a Crowning Moment of Awesome for everyone involved.
- Bowfinger and his "big movie on a shoestring budget" project.
- An episode of Green Acres had the entire city of Hooterville believing that a famous movie director was coming to their town, so they made their own movie to show to him. However, the movie that they made was so bad that the director was forced to burn up the film, under the orders of his boss.
- Community has a variant in which the characters attempt to film a commercial, with several characters treating it as an actual film shooting and things go horribly wrong.
- In another episode, Abed's movie about Jesus, which is actually a movie about himself making a movie about himself making a movie about Jesus... ends not well.
- Its Always Sunny In Philadelphia - After Dee tells the characters that she scored a part in a M. Night Shyamalan movie, Mac and Charlie attempt to write a script. The script turns out horrible and M. Night Shyamalan doesn't show up anyways.
- The entire plot of Action is Peter Dragon's attempt to make the film "Beverly Hills Gun Club". Said film is plagued by such problems as a drug-addicted star who demands a bigger codpiece, a director who drowns, a lead actress who suddenly puts on weight just before shooting (leading to an emergency liposuction), and so on.
- My Name Is Earl: One of the people on Earl's list is a young man who is dying and wants to make a movie wherein he's the star. Earl becomes the producer.
- Greg Brady's history project of making a movie about the Pilgrims and the first Thanksgiving, thanks to casting drama (Marcia refusing to be in the movie if she couldn't be Priscilla), special effects goof-ups (Peter messing around with the fake snow) and Mike's well-meaning meddling. Greg definitely earned his A that time!
- In FoxTrot, Jason's attempt to make a stop motion version of Jurassic Park called Mesozoic Park (which he claimed was a more accurate title as the Mesozoic Era included all of the dinosaurs featured in the film) was a disaster and left him with about thirty seconds of film. His later attempt to film his own version of King Kong met with similar failure.
- From Homestar Runner, Strong Bad's "Dangeresque" movies are full of these. Slip-ups include Coach Z saying, "Okay, how was that?" right after speaking a line woodenly, to the blatantly obvious use of Strong Sad as a stunt double.
- The Arthur episode "Arthur Makes a Movie" involved Arthur and friends trying to make their own James Hound movie, but everything kept going wrong, due to the incompetence of Muffy using her new video camera.
- An episode of Sponge Bob Square Pants had SpongeBob and Patrick make their own Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy movie, in protest of a new one being made with actors replacing the real Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy in the title roles.
- The Adventures of Jimmy Neutron: A big-time director is coming to Retroville and holds a contest to find a script to make a movie out of. Jimmy scientifically constructs a script by analyzing and replicating from all of the greatest films in history. His script is chosen and he and his friends are put into the movie. Unfortunately it was a trap designed by one of Jimmy's enemies trying to kill him.
- The Fairly OddParents: Timmy Turner once tried to make a movie to win a film festival to impress his crush, but using nothing but his close friends and a handheld camera, the results were pitiful. So he ended up using his fairies' magic to film at exotic locations with professional actors with real special effects.
- The Ren & Stimpy Show has an episode called "Stimpy's Cartoon Show", where Stimpy attempts to make an animated short film that'll impress his mentor. Ren is hired as the producer, and turns out to be an extreme Prima Donna Director, tearing up storyboards and producing the short on so small of a budget that Stimpy eventually resorts to using ultra-thin slices of wood in place of acetate sheets. Unlike most examples of this trope, Stimpy's mentor absolutely loves the film, though this is predictable given his personality.
- On one episode of Tiny Toon Adventures, the writers quit and Buster, Babs and the others end up having to do the show themselves.
- In Rockos Modern Life, Ralph Bighead, creator of The Fatheads, lets Rocko and friends do their own cartoon show for him, hoping that the results are so awful that Ralph will be let out of his contract. The result, "Wacky Deli", is as bad as Ralph hoped, but ends up being a runaway hit anyway.
- On The Simpsons, Springfield decides to have a film festival in order to boost tourism, and several townsfolk make movies themselves. In particular, Mr. Burns has "the Mexican non-union equivalent" of Steven Spielberg make a movie based on his life; at one point after he helps some villagers and tries to go Riding into the Sunset his foot gets caught in the stirrup of his horse and he's dragged away.
"We did twenty takes, and that was the best one."
- On The Amazing World of Gumball, Gumball and Darwin try to re-film a rented DVD that they broke ("Alligators on a Train") and do an awful job at it.
- The Angry Beavers, "Dag for Night": Dagget and Norbert find an old trunk full of movie-making equipment and some footage from an unfinished Oxnard Montalvo B-Movie, The Not-Too-Friendly Creature from the Off-White Puddle Who Will Eat You. They decide to finish it themselves, and Hilarity Ensues.
- It's somewhat the Once an Episode premise of Home Movies. Which is not to say that every home movie made by the characters is comically incompetent; some are, but others are as good as you'd expect from an artistic work made by fourth-graders.
- The Evil Dead (1981), as Sam Raimi and friends found out a feature was much harder than the shorts they had been making so far.
- Anyone who's ever had to make a group film for a school project has probably run into this trope. Members who forget to practice, Bad Bad Acting while looking in an awkward direction reading a (perhaps not so) hidden script, wind whistling in the microphone, crappy costumes and props because you have next to no budget and of course the rushed editing that is inevitable because it's always due way too soon.
- To the surprise of no one, The Room, according to The Disaster Artist.