Doing It for the Art: Quite possibly the only example of this trope that led to a Shaggy Dog Story. Director Marc Adler spent years scraping up funds outside the studio system, constantly refining technology and establishing his own studio in Atlanta. When it came time for distribution, he chose Distributor-for-Hire Freestyle Releasing and the film was all set to become an indie success story. Going by the abysmally low gross, this was certainly not the case.
Dueling Movies: Avatar, as mentioned above. This is quite possibly the most lopsided duel in cinematic history. So much so in fact, you probably weren't even aware Delgo was on the other side.
Invisible Advertising: Probably the biggest reason for the film's failure, even above the actual quality of the thing.