On the original VHS releases of the Hanna-Barbera Superstars 10 movies, the trailers for Rockin' With Judy Jetson and Scooby-Doo! and the Reluctant Werewolf did not use clips from the actual movies in question. Instead, the Rockin' with Judy Jetson trailer used clips from the original Jetsons episode "A Date with Jet Screamer", while the Reluctant Werewolf trailer used clips from Scooby-Doo and Scrappy-Doo episode "Moonlight Madness". Also, the trailer for Yogi Bear and the Magical Flight of the Spruce Goose mistakenly identifies antagonists Dread Baron and Mumbly as Dastardly and Muttley.
This trailer for Scooby-Doo and the Ghoul School from 2002 shows very little footage from the actual TV movie, instead throwing in clips from the first three direct-to-video Scooby-Doo movies by Warner Bros. Animation (such as Zombie Island and Witch's Ghost), to make it look like the whole gang goes to Miss Grimwood's Finishing School for Girl Ghouls, instead of just Shaggy, Scooby and Scrappy-Doo (and the trailer only contains one very brief shot of Scrappy, very small.)
Early press material for The Adventures of Tintin made it sound like Thom(p)son and Thom(p)son were the villains. In reality, they are two bumbling cops who serve as comic relief.
The original trailer of Alice in Wonderland implored moviegoers to, "...share with Alice the wonderful things she sees, the wonderful friends she meets." Actually, Alice doesn't make a lot of friends in Wonderland, if any at all. Most of the denizens annoy and/or try to kill her. Indeed, the very clip that this narration accompanies shows Alice running for her life from the Queen of Hearts.
The Bring My Brown Pants mentioned above was supposed to happen when they ran into the bears. It actually happened several minutes beforehand.
The moose Ass Shovescene. Oddly, one of the Direct-to-DVD sequels, Family Vacation, used this version of the scene for a flashback, rather than the scene that actually happened in the final film.
There's the 1954 animated movie version of Orwell's Animal Farm which faithfully follows the novel, and the 1999 version that, more or less, still faithfully follows it. One trailer makes it look much like Babe, whereas another gets the drama tone down right.
Parodied in the trailer for Aqua Teen Hunger Force Colon Movie Film for Theaters, which gives a long list of things that do not appear in the movie. Except the flaming chicken.
Similarly, an early trailer for Team America: World Police gave a long list of actors and political figures... followed by the note that "They're all going to hate this movie" (since it's a send-up of The War on Terror and directly makes fun of many of them).
The trailers for the All-CGI Cartoon movie Battle for Terra show things from the humans' side and barely shows the alien characters, which misleads the public about the fact that the humans are the invaders.
The trailer for Batman: Assault on Arkham made it looks like the Suicide Squad was being sent into Arkham to deal with the Joker getting his hands on a dirty bomb. While it does form the climax and Batman is indeed on that case, the reason given to the team is that the Riddler had gotten his hands on information relating to the Squad. The real reason is for most of the Squad to stir up a mess while Frost tries to kill the Riddler, as he knows how to defuse the bombs in the Squad's necks.
The trailers for Atlantis: The Lost Empire show Milo presenting his proposal, making it look like he's really doing the presentation for the Smithsonian board, whereas in the film, he's only rehearsing it and finds out afterwards that they deliberately rescheduled the presentation to a time he'd missed, thereby giving them an excuse to preemptively turn him down.
A TV spot for Beauty and the Beast (which can also be seen on the DVD and Blu-Ray releases) focused on the action scenes and the slapstick battle between the Enchanted Objects and the mob as opposed to the love story that dominates the film. The slapstick, in particular, was emphasized to ride the coattails of the previous year's hit Home Alone. Shockingly (and rather not surprisingly), the same commercial portrays the independent, headstrong Belle as the Damsel in Distress that needs to be saved by Beast and the Enchanted Objects. The aforementioned comic battle in the film itself is all about the Beast and Belle has nothing to do with it. By contrast, the theatrical trailer is an accurate rundown of the story.
This trailer for Beavis And Butthead Do America had Butt-Head asking, "Did we miss Baywatch?" followed by Muddy shooting the TV and responding, "No." In the movie, Butt-head's line is a mere throwaway, and Muddy shooting the TV actually makes sense — he does it to ensure that Beavis and Butt-Head can't watch TV before going on their mission.
An early teaser for the BIONICLEDirect-to-Video film Web of Shadows featured a somewhat eerie closeup shot of Nuju in his Toa Metru form (from the previous movie, Legends of Metru Nui), leading many fans to suspect that he was to be the big traitor in the movie. Actually, he has a very minor supporting role, and later trailers full-on revealed that Vakama was the real traitor. Nuju was probably just a random stand-in for the Toa in general for the teaser, the same way the teaser for Legends of Metru Nui showed a still of Kopaka Nuva standing in Metru Nui's great temple, which would have been impossible, as Kopaka Nuva only came into existence a 1000 years after that movie's story.
In the trailer, Maria sees a snake coming near her and Manolo, shouts his name, he gets bitten and dies. In the movie, Maria sees the snake, shouts Manolo's name, protects him by going in front of the snake which bites her once, and she dies. Subverted later, as Manolo then got voluntarily bitten twice by the snake while Maria just needed a kiss to come back to life, because she was only bitten once.
In general, the advertising for the film focused heavily on the Land of the Remembered and made it seem as though the film was largely about Manolo's journey through the afterlife. Most of the movie actually takes place in the Land of the Living, and the story doesn't move into the afterlife until about halfway through.
The trailers for Brave make it out to be an action flick about a female action hero. The movie itself has very little action, and instead it's about a girl who doesn't want to do what her mother wants her to do, so she accepts a curse from a witch that turns her mom into a bear, but soon regrets it and must find a way to undo the curse. While this allowed them to avoid giving away the central twist of the movie, it also made sure that a lot of people would go who wouldn't have gone otherwise. One of the trailers also edits several lines from one of the clan leaders ("Where's the queen? This means war!") to suggest that what Merida does to her mother will threaten to start even bigger problems. While fights between the clans do break out, they're generally Played for Laughs. The transformation of Elinor only really affects the king, and the clan leaders are spoiling for fights in any case.
The trailer for The Brave Little Toaster describes the movie as cheerful and "sure to warm your spirits." It is, at times, but it's largely also something of a drama. Not to mention the several deaths and at least one suicide in the movie.
A minor example. Some commercials for the movie have Fall Out Boy's "My Songs Know What You Did in the Dark (Light 'Em Up)" playing in the background. Fall Out Boy does provide the main theme song for the movie (known as "Immortals"), but not that song. However, it does provide Foreshadowing when Hiro nearly kills Yokai.
Another minor example: In one Japanese trailer for the movie, the scene where Hiro reaches out to Baymax in the portal is shown against a clear blue sky instead of the swirling violet landscape of the portal, possibly to avoid this very spoiler.
Capture the Flag: The trailer for some reason makes Big Bad Richard Carson into a Sir Not-Appearing-in-This-Trailer, with no mention of his plans to go to the moon to "prove" the moon landing was fake and claim the moon for himself, even though this is what kicks off the entire plot of the movie. Instead, the trailer focuses entirely on protagonist Mike Goldwing and his attempt to stow away on the next rocket bound for the moon. The trailer also tries to make us believe that Mike and his girlfriend Amy accidentally launch the rocket ahead of schedule with only them and Mike's grandfather on board, while in reality this is done by one of Carson's mooks in an attempt to prevent NASA from getting to the moon earlier than him.
The trailers for A Christmas Carol made it look like a goofy, kiddy version of the story, not aided by the fact that it stars Jim Carrey. The actual movie, however, is faithful and keeps most of the original's story characteristics intact, including the horror.
The original trailer of Cinderella III: A Twist in Time includes a scene of clips from the original Cinderella's "Bibbidi-Bobbidi-Boo" and ball sequences playing backwards while Lady Tremaine recites a time-travel incantation. In the actual movie, she only goes to a point in between the ball and the fitting of the glass slipper, far back enough to make the slipper fit one of Cinderella's stepsisters.note The narrator asks, "What if the slipper didn't fit?" in one part of the trailer.
The trailer for the Cinderella II and III 2-Movie Collection shows so many clips from A Twist in Time that people who never saw either movie before might mistake some of those clips as scenes from Dreams Come True. It doesn't help that part of this ad actually dubs audio from Dreams Come True over Twist in Time footage. Plus, like the original Dreams Come True trailer, it never draws attention to that movie's lack of a central plot.
A lot of people didn't want to see Coraline, even ranting about how it wasn't as scary as the book, after seeing the theatrical trailer, which made it seem more kid-friendly. This resulted in several people missing out on the film itself, and many parents escorting terrified and crying children out of the theaters. Coincidentally, Neil Gaiman cited the happy, childish trailer as his favourite. The theatrical trailer for Coraline is honestly pretty terrifying and accurate to the actual movie but the TV spots make it seem like lighthearted children's fare.
The Croods trailers make it look like rebellious teen Eep is the main character. While her open-minded approach to new experiences is important, it's her dad who's really the main character, protecting his family.
The early trailers showed only the escalating, cartoony conflict between the Villain Protagonist and the, er, Villain-y-er Antagonist, making the movie look like a Spy vs. Spy-style supervillainy-fest. Only the later trailers revealed the movie's true nature as a Children Raise You story which happens to feature a supervillain as its main character.
There was also the teaser which consisted entirely of the opening scene followed by the titles. The scene in question involves a misbehaving kid unintentionally exposing the Great Pyramid of Giza to have been replaced by an inflatable copy, followed by a news report commenting on these events. Based on this alone, the film appears to be some kind of comedy-mystery about a mysterious villain planning to steal various monuments, and the plot seems to be about trying to find out who is responsible. In actuality the Pyramid theft is pretty minor (although it does become the subject for some humor when it is shown to have been stolen by the antagonist and hidden in his base, and it is painted blue so that it blends in with the sky. Of course, this incident does inspire Gru's plan to steal the Moon, which does help to drive the story, but the primary focus is still on his relationship with the kids.
The trailers for the third film show Gru exclaiming "We're going back to villainy" to the minions and gives the impression that he and his twin brother will be forming a supervillain team together. However, the quote is taken out of context, and what Gru actually says is "This DOESN'T mean we're going back to villainy" after losing his job as a secret agent. He does team up with his brother for a heist, but only to steal a valuable gem back from a rival supervillain, and only in order to get his job at the agency back.
One trailer portrays the film as being a comedy, specifically a parody of the adventure genre, i.e. Lord of the Rings. The film ended up being filled with more sugary sweetness and life lessons than a Care Bears movie.
The trailer for the movie also makes it seem as though The Fairly Odd Parents creator Butch Hartman is responsible for the movie's conception, even though Doogal is merely the US edition of the movie adaptation of the UK television series The Magic Roundabout (the trailer makes no reference to this, either).
The voice actor for Doogal in the trailer is actually Dylan's voice actor in the film.
The teaser for didn't even show anything about the story or even our two female leads of Anna and Elsa. Instead, it was a quick one-to-two-minute gag involving Olaf (the snowman Elsa creates that she unknowingly brings to life) sneezing his carrot nose off and trying to keep Kristoff's reindeer Sven from getting it. Later trailers continued to overplay how much of a part Olaf had in the movie, often focusing on his jokes and slapstick over anything resembling the Anna+Elsa plot. The actual film turned out to be about a lot more than just Olaf's wacky antics. The excessive focus on Olaf is parodied by this fake trailer (made by seinfeldspitstain of Jimmy Neutron Happy Family Happy Hour fame) that consists only of an ever-increasing number of poorly-made 3D-Olafs repeating "See the Frozen Snowman Comedy in theaters", and adds the subtitle "Snowman Comedy" to the movie.
Even Frozen's more serious trailers tell a few fibs of their own, some of them a consequence of rewrites going on in the script.
One trailer featured a shot of Elsa apparently deliberately casting some powerful ice magic, then switching to a shot of Arendelle freezing over, suggesting she deliberately cast a curse of eternal winter on Arendelle. The two shots are unrelated, and Elsa has no idea she cursed Arendelle — it's just really bad Power Incontinence due to her inability to control her powers.
The same trailers also made Elsa to be much more antagonistic, or possibly an outright villain, than she is, since all of her shots showed her using her powers aggressively with an outright look of rage on her face. In the actual film, said shots are Elsa defending herself against the Duke of Weselton's two unnamed bodyguards sent to shoot her.
It also indicated that Anna's relationship with Elsa would be a bombshell she drops on her companions midway through the story.
The "That's no blizzard — that's my sister" line, followed by a shot of Elsa on the top of a mountain casting her magic at Anna and Kristoff? That wasn't from the movie — it was from an earlier animation test. At that point in production, several things were different (if you look at the whole scene, Marshmallow has tree-trunk arms instead of the ice he has in the actual film, Anna has no white streak in her hair and, is also terrified and less willing to jump than in the finished film) and the characterization wasn't quite finalized. As a result, the characters in the test animation and some of the unused footage that made it into the trailers show them acting more like they did in earlier drafts, such as Anna being less brave and Elsa being the villain that she was for much of the production. In the final cut, Elsa's role was changed after the staff rewrote her as an Anti-Villain who just doesn't have much control over her powers and suffers from anxiety.
Many trailers made Hans out to be a supporting character of the movie by having him pictured along with Anna, Elsa, and Kristoff. This may have helped to hide the plot twist that Hans is in fact a villain.
This TV spot for A Goofy Movie says Max is the most popular kid in school, when he is established to be trying to climb up from the bottom of the social ladder. It implies Roxanne is his girlfriend before the events of the movie, when a major subplot involves him trying to get together with her in the first place. It says Max's best friend is cool, showing Bobby, when Max's best friend isn't Bobby (it's always been PJ, and Bobby is portrayed as a Fair Weather Friend or ally in this movie), Bobby is not explicitly shown to be cool, and Max's best friend is even less cool than Max, being a fatShrinking VioletNervous Wreck. Neither of the most important supporting characters, Pete and PJ, appear at all in the trailer, and the trailer makes Goofy and Max's conflict seem more one-sided than it really is (i.e. it makes Goofy out to be the only problem, and Max not at fault at all), and doesn't show much about its Road Trip Plot or it being a musical.
Most of the trailers for Hercules take certain lines out of context and dub them over completely different scenes.
The end of the original teaser trailer makes it look like Meg sings "Yes indeed!" at the end of "Zero to Hero", when actually it's one of the Muses. The same trailer also shows Phil saying "Don't let your guard down because of a pair of big blue eyes!" the line was changed to "...big goo-goo eyes!" in the finished film after the animators changed Meg's eyes to purple.
A later theatrical trailer shows the adult Hercules seemingly praying to the statue of Zeus and asking how to become a true hero, when actually that prayer and question are uttered by Young Hercules the first time he visits the temple and the clips of his older self talking to the statue are from a much later scene, and makes it look like Hades calls Hercules "Jerkules", when it's another person whose voice is used.
Hoodwinked, that is another case to talk about. The story is supposed to be Little Red Riding Hood with a twist. The trailers are formatted in such a way that they portray the Wolf as a moronic, incompetent villain, when in the movie he is an intelligent investigative journalist whose only antagonism is Mistaken Identity on Red Puckett's behalf.
In Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation, the trailer reveals early on that cruise captain Ericka is a Van Helsing. It implies that she's the main villain continuing the work of her long-dead great-grandfather Abraham, as she talks to his painting. But in the movie, the scene continues and turns out she's talking directly to him; he's still alive as some kind of steampunk cyborg and is the movie's true Big Bad, while Ericka is the conflicted love interest.
Most commercials for The Hunchback of Notre Dame make the film, which is generally regarded as one of the darkest animated films, look like a comedy.
Early trailers, commercials, and ads for the first film depict Scrat as a member of the Ragtag Bunch of Misfits, when in reality Scrat doesn't actually travel or interact with the group, save for one brief moment in the middle of the film when they ask him for directions. The trailers also omit the villains and some of the heavier elements.
In The Incredibles, like other trailers for Pixar films, the trailer is basically a sketch that doesn't appear in the film, but the trailer is also deliberately misleading in that it changes all the memorabilia in Bob's office to indicate that he has always worn the red Mr. Incredible suit, as opposed to the blue one. Even worse: the sketch depicts him answering a hotline phone in his office with a voice on the other end saying, "Mr. Incredible, we need your help." In the movie's main timeline, superheroes are outlawed and Bob is underground.
The "dinner argument" trailer prominently features the mother and father's emotions, but it doesn't show Joy and Sadness inside Riley's mind at all (since the scene takes place when they're both stranded in the long-term memory hallways). In the actual movie, the mother and father's emotions only appear in that scene, apart from one minor gag at the end of the movie; conversely, Joy and Sadness are the two most prominent emotions by a pretty wide margin, and most of the movie deals with their efforts to get along with each other.
The trailers make the mother and father look quite a bit more ignorant and adversarial (probably for humor's sake) than they are in the actual film: the father appears to be an easily distracted jerk with a temper problem, while the mother seems to be a cocky shrew who secretly regrets marrying her husband. In truth, they're both loving parents with a successful marriage, the "Brazilian Helicopter Pilot" joke is a one-off gag, and Riley's father actually has a tender talk with her after the dinner argument scene.
One of the TV spots gave the concept that Jimmy has always wanted to impress Cindy, implying that he likes her. Other than the fact that the two of them have always been rivals note at least until the series developed their love/hate relationship. Jimmy's only motivation for Cindy is to prove he has the superior intelligence. In fact, the only scenes where they show any affection to each other is where they accidentally gaze at each other when looking at stars, and when Cindy motivates Jimmy into helping the kids escape the Yolkian prison, but even she takes it back afterward.
How the Yolkians hatch the idea for abducting the adults is different from the trailer. It's from spying on Hugh and Judy rather than Jimmy's message, and a Yolkian that's not King Goobot says "The search is over!"
All of the trailers for Kung Fu Panda made it out to be a slapstick, comedic parody in the same vein as most of Dreamworks's animated features. Granted, this could be excused by the fact that the title character is voiced by Jack Black - but considering his usual style of acting and choice in film roles, this would seem to be a very strong example of Misaimed Marketing twice over. Most fans of Jack Black's usual work would not go to see him in an animated feature, and most parents would not want their kids to see an animated feature which starred Jack Black. In any case, the movie instead turned out to be a pretty serious, epic action film with almost mythic proportions at times. The comedy was all still there, but spaced out and used as comic relief to lighten the tension. Which means people coming to the film solely for Jack Black comedy were probably disappointed, and those who might have enjoyed the action never got a chance to see it because they were driven away by the trailers.
The trailers for Kung Fu Panda 2 gave it the same treatment, as the trailers were high on zaniness, fat jokes, and anachronistic music, but somewhat lacking in genocide, stabbings, and mental trauma. The trailer for the DVD release was deceptive in an entirely different way. While it has a surprisingly serious and dramatic tone, it tells a story that is completely different from the film's actual plot. This includes a line where Po declares "I'm not the last panda!" while showing a clip of the lost panda village seen at the very end of the film, implying that this is far more relevant to the plot than it actually is (i.e. not at all, it appears only as a Sequel Hook).
Some of the theatrical trailers from The Land Before Time show a couple of clips from the deleted footage (which fans are still to this day desperately wanting to see).
This is one of many reasons why some people detest the Ralph Bakshi adaptation of The Lord of the Rings: Granted, you might think it's a decent adaptation of the story on its own merits, even though it neglects Return of the King and only adapts the first book and half of the second book. However, the preview material never revealed this, so those in the audience who were expecting any kind of closure to the story after sitting on their asses for two hours had to leave the theaters with an aching pair of blue balls. This was due to Executive Meddling; the original title was supposed to be The Lord of the Rings Part I.
Most of the commercials make it look like a comedy instead of an epic drama. While the film does have comedic elements, "wacky, silly comedy" is definitely not the most fitting descriptor for it.
The theatrical trailer, while more accurate to the tone of the film, arguably makes it look like Nala is a villain, by showing the scene where she fights Simba without realizing it's him, but not the resolution of that scene. However, she is also shown happily exclaiming "You're the king!" earlier in the trailer.
This commercial for The Little Mermaid advertises the film as basically "Triton vs. Ursula", and takes scenes from arguably the scariest part of the film and puts them in a heroic context.
This trailer for Meet the Robinsons makes it seem like it's about two intelligent inventors trying to create the greatest invention ever, but it's actually a movie about an intelligent orphan named Lewis who wants to be with his mother again, but ends up getting sidetracked by a boy from the future named Wilbur (who happens to be Lewis's son), who is preventing the Bowler Hat Guy (who is Goob all grown up) from ruining Lewis's life.
Early trailers for Megamind do this as well, obscuring the fact that Megamind defeats Metro Man in the first act, with the rest of the movie pretty much having him ask "And Then What?" All of them make out the most part of the movie as being about Megamind vs. Metro Man, but it's more a romantic action-comedy with Megamind vs. himself and Titan. It also kind of makes Metro Man look a bit of a glory-hound jerk.
Every single trailer and piece of merchandise for Moana made it look like Pua the pig would be the titular character's sidekick for most of the movie. In truth, he's barely in the film, only appearing at the start and end, and the rooster Heihei fills that role. Furthermore, while the first trailer for Moana gets the idea of the movie across well, most of it is either misleading or completely absent from the movie. The trailer opens with Maui explaining who he is and his various accomplishments to Moana and Pua. In the movie, the scene is replaced with the song You're Welcome, which Pua isn't even present for. It then cuts to various clips from the movie played over We Know the Way, including Moana's village/tribe out sailing on a catamaran. While this clip does appear in the movie, with the accompanying song, it's presented as a Eureka Moment for Moana, who realizes that her ancestors, many generations ago, were oceanfarers.
Dreamworks' Monsters vs. Aliens made it out to be far zanier than it really was, and obscured Susan's status as the main character and instead played her condition for far more humor than in the movie itself.
This seems standard for Dreamworks now, as the early trailers and promotion for How to Train Your Dragon also tried (not very successfully, considering the box office opening) to make it out to be a zany Dreamworks comedy, when it is actually a fantasy adventure story; its humor is incidental to the plot. It wasn't until the final trailer that the promotion became more honest about the film's dramatic elements.
The teaser trailer for Mulan makes the film seem slightly more dramatic and action-packed than it really is. Not that it isn't dramatic or action-packed, but it's also a Disney animated musical with the requisite comedy, heartwarming, and family-friendly charm. The teaser trailer only highlights the war drama.
One trailer for The Pagemaster shows Macaulay Culkin's character receiving a sword that floated down from the library ceiling. It's really cool looking, but isn't in the film at all. This caused the Latin American title to become... "El Espadachín Valiente" (The Brave Swordsboy).
One of the trailers for The Simpsons Movie is misleading. It implies a dramatic secret will be revealed (which never happens), and that an empire will rise, seemingly under the control of Mr Burns (also never happens). It also shows Reverend Lovejoy presumably showing Marge footage of Grandpa's incident at the church, which in the film is actually shown to her by Comic Book Guy on his phone. It paints the movie as quite dramatic, even implying that the world is at risk of ending. Perhaps the reason the trailer is so misleading is that the makers of the film were keen to give away as little plot points as possible in the trailers.
The original theatrical trailer describes Sykes as "the vicious villain determined to destroy Oliver." While he does cause Oliver's Disney Death just before his own very real (and very brutal) death, that's pretty much the extent of their direct interactions throughout the entire movie. In the actual movie, he's a Loan Shark who spends much of the movie terrorizing Fagin before moving on to Jenny.
Similarly, the trailer for the 1996 re-release cuts various scenes together to make the viewers think Sykes kidnaps Oliver from Jenny to hold him for ransom and that the climax revolves around Fagin, Jenny and the dogs rescuing him. Actually, the dogs are the ones who "kidnap" Oliver (thinking they're rescuing him, not realizing he's happy with Jenny), Fagin is the one who holds him for ransom (to pay his debt to Sykes), Jenny is the character whom Sykes kidnaps, and the climax revolves around Oliver, Fagin, and the dogs rescuing her. This trailer also implies that Huey Lewis voices Oliver, which would have been serious Vocal Dissonance if it were true. Lewis performs the opening song "Once Upon a Time in New York City", but does not voice any character in the film.
Similarly to above, in a promo for the 1996 VHS release, an image of a random dog from the scene of "Perfect Isn't Easy" is billed as being voiced by Huey Lewis.
Television ads for Disney's dub of Ponyo play up most of the comedy bits and even use the last few seconds of the film out of context. Also, the commercials use bits of dialogue both out of context and played over completely different scenes than they are in the actual film. No, fish!Ponyo does not say "I will be a human too!" while still in the bucket. There's a part where Ponyo's mother calls "Good luck Ponyo!" while in the movie she actually says "Good luck Lisa", to Satsuke's mother. And the teaser trailer makes it seem as if Ponyo's father tells her that she is the only one who can save the world, and then releases her, and her wave running somehow is related to said world-saving. In the movie, the lines her father says are actually directed to Satsuke (who can save the world only by accepting Ponyo) and the wave running has nothing to do with Ponyo saving the world.
The trailer for The Prince of Egypt implies it to be a very action-oriented animated movie. It isn't of course - it's a religious story about everything from the birth of Moses to parting the Red Sea. But then, if someone made it all the way from the first press releases to opening day without ever deducing that it was a film about the story of Moses, frankly, they deserved to be let down.
Tiana not actually being a princess is a major part of the plot. On the other hand, she becomes one, and Charlotte is theoretically a princess.
In the third trailer, a line was added in with Mama Odie telling Tiana that "all that matters is what's under the skin". Not only does this line never appear in the movie, but it is in no way related to the moral that either Tiana learns or that Mama Odie is attempting to teach. They also take the "Don't matter what you look like" lyric of her song out of context. The same trailer emphasizes that it's "the kind of magic that can only happen when you wish upon a star". "Wishing upon a star" is 100% contradictory to the moral of the story, which is that while wishing (determination) takes you part of the way, you still have to work for what you want.
Overall, Disney did an excellent job making this movie look like something it isn't in the TV spots, putting emphasis on butt jokes, fart jokes, and Louis and Ray at their goofiest.
Ratatouille has a teaser trailer that makes the film look like more a traditional cartoon story, with Remy stealing cheese from the dining area of Gusteau's. It gives the impression that the viewer is in for some Tom-and-Jerry antics, instead of a story of a rat who wants to make food, not steal it.
Shrek 2: The trailers made it look like the "Happily Ever After Potion" was entirely Played for Laughs. While the part with Donkey turning into a stallion (which was the only part shown in the trailer) certainly are, that's only half of it: its effects on Shrek and Fiona are very much Played for Drama. Not to mention Donkey's "Gimme that bottle!" line was taken way out of context. In addition, the trailer (via some spliced footage and audio) showed Shrek in ogre form when discovering that Donkey transformed into a stallion. In the actual film, they transform at the same time.
From watching the trailers or paying attention to any of the marketing for Shrek the Third, one would think that the movie was about Shrek and Fiona having a ton of babies and Shrek having to learn to be a father. You couldn't be more wrong. The movie is actually about Shrek trying to find the only remaining heir to Fiona's parents' kingdom, and the baby thing is a minor reason behind it. All in all, about a minute and a half of the movie involves ogre babies—one Nightmare Sequence about halfway through (which shows dozens of babies, which is what most of the marketing drew its material from) and a short sequence at the very end of the movie where Shrek and Fiona have three children. That's all. But when you look at all of the promo merchandise, from fast-food toys to collectible glasses with pictures of ogre babies pasted all over them, that'd be a bit hard to deduce. In the UK, the trailers, standees and the title all implied the movie would be about Shrek being king. Shrek is king for a few short visual gags at the beginning before he sets out on his quest to find the true heir.
The Sleeping Beauty Platinum Edition DVD has 8.5% wider picture compared to the Special Edition DVD from five years earlier. Some promos exaggerated the difference by putting a clip or still from the Platinum Edition up against a picture trimmed even more heavily than on the Special Edition DVD.
The trailer for South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut features a completely different version of the scene where Kenny removes his hood than in the actual film. Ike is present in the clip but not in the actual scene, and the boys look either horrified or surprised when they see Kenny's face, but they never have these reactions in the film. Trailers also downplayed the fact the film is a musical.
All the ads play up the CGI scenes... which take up about 20 minutes of the movie. The majority of the animation in film is actually hand-drawn, with plenty of Art Shifts.
This trailer promises a cameo by Slash as a street musician, which ended up being cut from the film. It also makes it look as if Burger Beard is the one who attacks the Krusty Krab. In the actual film, it's Plankton.
The teaser trailer for Storks shows the stork delivery company still producing babies when in the film they stopped years ago.
Trailers and commercials included jokes and scenes not seen in the movie. Some added completely new voiceovers that made it seem as if the plot of the film was that Rapunzel had escaped, and guards were attempting to put her back in the tower.
Ads and trailers made no indication to the film being a musical.
One trailer shows Rapunzel with Prehensile Hair that can grab and attack Flynn on its own. Other trailers showed her using the hair to close doors and windows. In the film, the hair has none of these properties, and actually has to be carried by characters throughout, as it is liable to getting caught on objects as it drags across the ground.
By playing up some Subverted Tropes and the one scene in the film where Rapunzel overpowers the main male character, while using a punk-pop song by singer P!nk, the trailers led some to believe it was a Dreamworks-style parody of traditional fairy tales, rather than a fairly straightforward version of the story that updates Rapunzel to an Action Girl.
Good god, TMNT was bad about this. The trailers, marketing, and evenhis own voice actor stated that Max Winters was the main villain, and from the looks of things he was trying to unleash a bunch of horrific monsters on the world. Winters is really The Atoner who already unleashed the monsters centuries ago and is now trying to stop them, something that's made clear as early as the first five minutes. Additionally, the materials made it look like it would focus on all four turtles equally, but in the actual film, Leonardo and Raphael are the only two with any real relevance to the story: Michelangelo and Donatello both have about 20 minutes of screentime each at most.
In the trailer, there is a clip where Buzz Lightyear says, "You're mocking me, aren't you?" and pushes a tool box off a shelf and onto Woody. Given the context of the prior scenes shown, it seems as though Buzz is getting revenge. In the actual context of the scene, Buzz is really trying to help Woody escape (he continues to push the tool box without knowing that Woody managed to get out), and the real line he says is "Almost... there..." The line as said in the trailer is actually used earlier on in the film, around the point where Sid is introduced.
A TV spot has Buzz saying "I changed my laser from stun to kill" and Woody replying "Oh great, now we can blink them to death" edited into the scene where they are riding on RC and being chased by Sid's dog.
When another TV spot shows the part where Little Bo Peep flirts with Woody, they added in a soundbite of Buzz saying "Don't even think about it, cowboy!". In reality, this is before Buzz is introduced.
One TV spot for a TV broadcast of Toy Story has a character roll call, and the character, Hamm is credited as "Pig E. Bank".
The focus on Forky in the Toy Story 4 trailers had audiences anticipating a more existential look at exactly what makes a toy a toy. However, Forky's identity crisis is resolved early in the movie, his ability to be animate not able to be explained, and the movie's themes are more about the purpose of a toy, regardless of origins.
The trailer for the Pixar movie WALLE makes the movie look like an action adventure movie in which the last robot on Earth must save the planet. It's actually a love story about two robots who find love. Also, the trailer advertises Captain McCrea as a villain, as a made-for-trailer quote in his voice says, "Arrest that robot!" In the film, McCrea's just a supporting protagonist. In addition, in the movie, the clip that plays in the trailer actually has him saying "Mutiny!!!" to Auto after the latter betrays him by badly damaging Wall-E, throwing him in the garbage chute along with EVE, and leaving in in his room, just to follow his A113 order to not return to Earth.
Ads for Wonder Park focused on the colorful, upbeat theme park scenes while obscuring the darker scenes revolving around grief. Many were surprised to learn the protagonist's depression comes as a result of the mother being deathly ill.
The trailers for Wreck-It Ralph, and many of its advertisements, really puts emphasis on all those easily recognized villains at the Bad-Anon meeting, suggesting they will be reforming or rebelling against... being bad, and maybe even that the characters we think of as heroes are secretly jerks. But they're basically cameos, and the story is actually about Ralph accepting himself, and his big-brother relationship with Vanellope — who is barely shown in trailers, despite being the co-star.
Many people were surprised that Zootopia dealt with themes like racial profiling, the danger of negative stereotypes, political corruption, and more, because the ads made it look like a cutesy flick about funny talking animals.
The trailer for the low budget animated movie Zoo Wars shows a scene where a moose says, "Your reign of evil is over, Boo Boo Squeal!", while in the movie it's actually a squirrel named Squezzy Whistle who says it during the climax. What's more, the moose shown actually works for Boo Boo to hunt down the heroes.