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    Mockbusters: Way Worse Than The Worst Blockbusters

    Age of the Hobbits was ROBBED of an Oscar nomination this year by some soundalike poser, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey.

    A "mockbuster" is a movie intentionally made to seem so similar to another mass market film that it tricks customers into spending money on it, rather than the mass market version. / Via

    Seen very obviously here.

    "Age of the Hobbits" is a recent entry by production company The Asylum in a long, weird tradition of mockbusters.

    It's now going by the title "Clash of the Empires" due to screamingly obvious legal issues.

    Warner Bros has brought its massive legal hammer down on The Asylum, who responded awesomely.

    It's these hobbits – lower-case h – not these Hobbits.

    It even says so right on the movie poster!

    Tricksy little Hobbitses. Alas, they still had to change the name.

    This is hardly the first (or last) time the Asylum's tried the ol' "trick customers into buying our DVDs," business model, either.

    "Jack The Giant Killer" is coming out on March 12, "Jack The Giant Slayer" on March 1.

    "Hansel & Gretel" came out January 8 this year, "Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters" came out January 17.

    "Grimm's Snow White", "Snow White & The Huntsman" and "Mirror Mirror" were all released in 2012.

    "American Warships" and "Battleship" both came out in 2012. / Via

    This one makes a lot more sense when you learn Universal forced The Asylum to change it from American Battleship.

    2011 saw the following movies:

    2009's "Sherlock Holmes" was followed by 2010's "Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes" from The Asylum. / Via

    We assume The Asylum's delay was due to adding in the krakens and fire-breathing dinosaurs.

    In 2008, The Asylum's title guy took it easy.

    He was really phoning it in. / Via

    Those are seriously posters for two different movies.

    But they got the Insane Clown Posse for Death Racers, so we're willing to forgive it.

    2007 saw the rise of the Transmorphers.

    2006 had snakes on the brain.

    And sure, "The Da Vinci Code" had Tom Hanks, but the Asylum's version had TREASURE.

    The Asylum's mockbuster track record goes back to 2005's "H.G. Wells' War of the Worlds", released one day before Steven Spielberg's "War of the Worlds".

    But they're not the only ones in the mockbuster game. Gaiam made "Chop Kick Panda" in 2011.

    They also made "Kiara the Brave" in 2011 to go along with Brightspark's "Braver".

    And both companies had a go at "Happy Feet".

    The Asylum should really give its own original properties more of a shot.

    Especially when they have the rights to monsters named "Megashark", "Crocosaurus", and "Gatoroid".