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So, you're watching a new movie and you instantly recognize the guy playing the hero's best friend -- he's Bob Smith from your favorite TV show! Wait just a second, you think, you've heard a lot about this movie and you had no idea that he was in it. Why not? It's not like he's appearing in a bit part.

Well, it may be because he was effectively unpersoned by the marketing campaign. He wasn't in the trailer, he doesn't have his own action figure and he's not on the poster. But everyone else from the movie is. For some reason, the marketing department has apparently decided that he's Sir Not-Appearing-In-This-Trailer.

Usually used purposefully to prevent spoilers. The typical result is that anyone who absorbs the movie through Popcultural Osmosis will not know the character exists.

This trope is named after the aptly named "Sir Not-Appearing-In-This-Film" who failed to appear in Monty Python and The Holy Grail. Contrast Lady Not-Appearing-In-This-Game, as video games tend to have the exact opposite problem. Compare Dead Star Walking, where an apparently major character is quickly killed for dramatic effect.

Examples of Sir Not-Appearing-In-This-Trailer include:


Anime

  • Kiryuu Michiru and Kiryuu Kaoru of Futari wa Pretty Cure Splash Star are the Dark Magical Girl Evil Counterparts of Saki and Mai, the original owners of the Frills of Justice, and eventually part of the Nakama. Despite other non-Cure allies Shiny Luminous and Milky Rose getting tons of merchandise and appearing prominently in ads, Michiru and Kaoru may as well not exist to the toy companies and marketing department.
  • While introducing most of the Loads and Loads of Characters in the series, the Baccano! Title Sequence deliberately leaves everyone's favorite Ax Crazy Psycho for Hire, Claire Stanfield, unmentioned. Not to say that he doesn't a make a visual appearance in it -- just look for the redheaded conductor.
    • The same thing happens in the Post Episode Trailer of episode 8. Episode nine is titled "Claire Stanfield Successfully Completes the Mission", but most of the clips in the trailer focus on Rachel, which helps to hide Claire's identity again. And once again, he does make a small appearance in the trailer -- his is the face shown right at the start of it covered in shadows and blood. Yeah, he's like that.
      • The focus on Rachel becomes another bit of Fridge Brilliance when you realize that the withholding of Rachel's name up to that point combined with Claire's Gender Blender Name make it easy for new viewers to assume that Rachel is the Claire in the episode title.
  • The opening credits of Tytania leave out the ostensible protagonist Admiral Fan Hyulick, his entire band of supporting characters, and his love interest entirely.
  • ADV Films' trailer for Cyber Team in Akihabara almost completely leaves out the Divas (arguably one of the more memorable elements of the series): the main character's Diva form only appears briefly, and the character's voiceover doesn't make note of it at all.

Fanworks

  • Inverted and parodied in the Yu-Gi-Oh: The Abridged Movie trailer, where Bakura is credited as "Sir not appearing in this film." Sure enough, he is not in the movie (briefly), as he is making Zorc and Pals: The Movie.


Film

  • The Emperor in Return of the Jedi. He's been treated more kindly since the prequels came out, but the original promotion of Jedi in 1983 seemed to go out of its way to ignore his existence. He didn't show up on any of the posters (in fact, one poster shows his throne room without his chair) and the trailers only ever showed Darth Vader or Jabba the Hutt when a word like "evil" or "villain" was mentioned. Presumably, the marketing department wanted to continue portraying Darth Vader as the Big Bad and the existence of the Emperor kind of got in the way.
    • Reversed with the Revenge of the Sith marketing, which did feature a heavy emphasis on the Emperor, despite it being a spoiler that nice-guy Palpatine is actually a Sith Lord, or that he becomes the evil Emperor (although those familiar with the Expanded Universe had long ago claimed it as fact to their friends and the 'net...). Similarly reversed in the same marketing campaign with Darth Vader, who became THE posterchild for the film, despite only actually showing up in his classic appearance for two short scenes at the end (one of which is infamous).
  • Anthony Mackie in The Adjustment Bureau has third billing, but you wouldn't know he's in the film from its advertising.
  • Nathaniel in Enchanted. The trailer shows Giselle, Prince Edward and Queen Narissa come out of the manhole and then goes on to show several Fish Out of Water scenes with only them. This despite the fact that Nathaniel is pursuing Giselle through New York for most of the movie and Narissa herself comes through only at the end.
    • Possibly because if the audience did see him, they'd shout out "Hey, what's Peter Pettigrew doing there?"
  • Charlize Theron's character in Hancock was completely absent from the original trailers, as was any indication that Hancock was not a one of a kind superhero. Thus, when the ads for the DVD came out showing her and her role, many people who hadn't seen the movie thought it looked like a completely different movie.
  • Mr. Blue from Reservoir Dogs is conspicuously absent from most posters, some of which even say 'Five men...' instead of six. Also, Joe and Nice Guy Eddie (because they don't fit the naming convention) often aren't in posters that contain much more minor characters, Mr. Brown and sometimes Blue, who do fit.
    • The original UK quad not only has Mr. Blue on the poster, but Nice Guy Eddie as well (wearing the trademark suit that the other characters wear rather than the tracksuit he wears throughout the film). The only character not seen on this poster is Joe.
  • A deliberate example is Kevin Spacey as the killer in Se7en, who was excluded from all promotional material and even the opening credits to avoid giving away his identity before he appears.
    • Spacey himself insisted on the anonymity prior to the film's release. He made no mention of his involvement with the film until after it was released. The producers had wanted him to have top billing. Dedication to his craft indeed.
    • He eventually does get top billing in the end credits, but that's pretty consistent since it's about as far from the advertising stage as you can get.
  • There is very little footage of Ozymandias in any of the trailers for the film adaptation of Watchmen. This is because 90% of his scenes are after he is revealed as The Chessmaster.
  • In the movie Earthquake, there is a scene in a bar where a drunk is talking, and it turns out to be Walter Matthau, but because of contractual obligations, they can't refer to him directly, so in the credits he's called Walter Matuschanskayasky. This spawned its own urban legend.
  • Vidia in Disney Fairies, especially in regards to the Tinker Bell movie. Although she is the main antagonist in the movie and an antisocial Anti-Hero in the novels, she hasn't appeared in any of the trailers for the movie, had a briefer-than-brief scene in a sneak peek on ABC, and has very little merchandise, all of which appeared at the launch of the line, leaving her none whatsoever for the movie.
  • Frollo from Disney's The Hunchback of Notre Dame doesn't appear on the DVD cover and is not mentioned in the plot synopsis on the back, yet he has the most screen time of any villain in the Disney Animated Canon.
    • Disney shows Frollo off very little in general, but it's not hard to see why.
  • Many trailers of The Dark Knight went to great lengths to avoid mentioning that Harvey Dent became Two-Face in that movie, leading many fans to assume he was being set up as the Big Bad of the next one.
  • Executive Producer Mel Brooks deliberately kept his name away from the ads for David Lynch's The Elephant Man and David Cronenberg's The Fly, out of fear that people would get the wrong idea about the movies in question. When his involvement in The Fly became public knowledge, he made the most of it and attended the premiere passing out plastic antennae. Boy, was that audience in for a surprise.
  • Tom Cruise, only appears in Tropic Thunder trailers from after the film's wide release. Ben Stiller wanted him to be a surprise for audiences when they recognised him. He said in interviews that he was disappointed that reviewers and critics gave the game away. While this was a letdown on the filmmaking side, the giveaway that Cruise was in the movie played a big role in its success.
  • Kung Fu Panda - In the trailers, Academy Award winner Dustin Hoffman received no credit for his role as 2nd lead Master Shifu.
  • Norrington from Pirates of the Caribbean. After all, who wants to see a stuffy British officer in a movie about Pirates? Other than the fangirls, that is. He was downplayed in the first three films, yet served as a secondary/important villain in the first two, and had a Heel Face Turn in the third.
    • One actor's appearance in the second film was given away by IMDB, of all places, which listed him in the cast credits. He has roughly 10 seconds of screen time in that film. It's Geoffrey Rush as Barbossa, who was resurrected at the end of the second film, to the surprise of even the second film's main actors.
  • Elmer Fudd in Looney Tunes Back in Action. He is a fairly prominent character in the film, but instead of showing him in the cover or any promotional material, apparently the artists felt Tweety and the Road Runner, both of whom barely appear in the film, had to be in it.
  • Though Sir-Not-Appearing-In-This-Poster: the film poster for Scary Movie doesn't feature protagonist Cindy Campbell - probably because then-unknown Anna Faris wouldn't attract as many moviegoers as co-star Shannon Elizabeth. The DVD tries to fix it.
  • Did anyone know Edward Norton's in Kingdom of Heaven? He plays a near-unrecognizable victim of leprosy who spends most of the movie wearing a large metal mask, so this example may be at least partially justified.
  • The T-800 in Terminator Salvation. Particularly that he has Schwarzenegger's face.
  • Both viable candidates for the role of protagonist in Inglourious Basterds -- Shosanna Dreyfus (Mélanie Laurent) and Hans Landa (Christoph Waltz) are entirely eclipsed in trailers by Brad Pitt's Aldo Raine, who has both less screen time and a less important role in the plot of the movie than either of them. The only other important characters, Bridget von Hammersmark (Diane Kruger) and the English agent Archie Hicox (Michael Fassbender), also fail to appear.
    • Hans Landa may be the character that appears most in the film, but that's just because he's the antagonist to all of the multiple protagonists. He, himself, is most definitely not a protagonist. Also both Bridget and Shoshanna do appear in the trailers, though, yes, are entirely eclipsed by Aldo.
  • Amanda Seyfried is billed prominently in the ads for Jennifer's Body, but the entire focus of the advertising campaign was put on Megan Fox (she was the only person who appeared in the posters), making it look as though Seyfried's character was only a supporting role, as opposed to the film's protagonist. Although slasher movie promotion traditionally focuses its marketing on the monster, and not on the victims that are technically the protagonists.
  • The DVD cover of Chicken Little is missing Ugly Duckling. But apparently Morcubine Porcupine was good enough to take her place.
  • Alex, the character in The Big Chill who commits suicide, is only seen with slit wrists. All of his scenes in the movie that were performed by Kevin Costner, were dropped from the film.
  • Kick-Ass seems to be an interesting case of this. From the trailer you'd think Red Mist was a fairly minor character, as he was in the comic. However, the movie actually fleshed him out far more, and gave him a lot of screen time to himself.
  • Transformers: The Movie doesn't even have Optimus Prime in the trailer or on the poster! To compare, Blurr is on both (and his voice actor, John Moschitta, "co-stars" in the film) and he probably has no more than seven lines and an extremely minor role.
  • Because of his political life, the poster for The Expendables doesn't mention Arnold Schwarzenegger.
    • Well, it was just a two minute cameo.
    • And both he and Bruce Willis were mentioned on the British posters, even though they both appear in the same cameo and aren't mentioned on the movie's credits!
  • For the advertising of the 2009 Star Trek film, McCoy seemed to get little attention at all despite being the third piece of the Holy Trinity of Trek. Instead, they seemed to give all his advertisement time to Zoe Saldana's Uhura. Don't worry, however -- good ol' Bones did have a substantial role in the film after all.
    • Leonard Nimoy was also left out of the trailers and the posters. Of course, the whole point was that his appearance was supposed to be a surprise.
  • While Dileep Rao appeared in the group poster, had one line in the trailer, most people didn't know he was in Inception, because his name failed to appear in the billing. This was despite the fact that he was the Chemist, without which the entire heist that Cobb planned would have been impossible. More than one fan felt that he got shafted.
  • The trailers for WALL-E were full of cute robots mooning for their girlfriends, but rather lacking in the person who spent most of his considerable screen time on getting humanity back on track - the Captain.
    • This was deliberate, of course. The morbidly obese appearance of what's left of Humanity was meant to be shocking to the audience, so spoiling it in the trailers would have made very little sense.
  • None of the Toy Story 3 trailers include Bonnie, the little girl whose mother works at the daycare, despite Andy giving Woody and his friends to Bonnie in the final scene. As a result, the third trailer could make some people believe that her triceratops and Totoro dolls live at the daycare.
  • In the posters for Scott Pilgrim vs. The World, they consistently show the seven evil exes - and leave off Scott Pilgrim whenever they can. It's believed that after a few obvious flops (like Year One which was made after Scott Pilgrim, but released first) they considered Michael Cera box-office poison, and tried to hide him.
  • In the trailers for Tangled, Big Bad Mother Gothel isn't featured in any of the trailers except for a split second in the second official one.
    • Early trailers also extensively tried to make it look like Flynn Rider was the lead, with much made of how smarmy and how well he could put out a one liner. This was because Disney didn't like how much money The Princess and the Frog made (it did well, but not the stratopheric levels they wanted), and blamed it one how "girly" it was; therefore, while acknowledging that Rapunzel was in it, they pushed Rider to appeal to boys.
  • Amy Adams in Talladega Nights. Rather, the girl shown in the trailers and posters is Leslie Bibb (who disappears midway through the film).
    • Not all that unexpected. She wasn't really a star yet when Talladega Nights was released, she didn't get famous until Enchanted came out a year later.
  • In the sequel to Boondock Saints, Willem Dafoe's character is mentioned early on as having died recently. As it turned out, he faked his own death, but we don't find this out until nearly the very end of the movie. Not only did they avoid putting Dafoe in any promotional material, but they made a big deal of how they had wanted him to return for the sequel but he had declined, making the quick early reference to his death look like their cheap way out of not having his character in the movie.
  • The original trailer and promotional material for Tron: Legacy went out of their way to avoid indicating who or what the villain of the film would be. It wasn't revealed until a few weeks before the film was released that Flynn's A.I. doppelganger CLU would be the Big Bad, and that was only after the release of the tie-in comic book Tron: Betrayal and video game Tron: Evolution which made it pretty explicit that Clu would be the movie's villain.
  • Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland More a case of 'Sir Not Appearing In This Poster'; anyone who only saw the advertising campaign would think that it was basically 'Johnny Depp Plays a Weird Guy in a Hat: The Movie'.
  • The Adventures of Baron Munchausen: Robin Williams was called in as a last minute replacement due to Executive Meddling and Troubled Production. Robin's agent wouldn't let Terry Gilliam credit him or promote the film using his name, so that the studio wouldn't credit him as the star and try to mismarket it as a Robin Williams-type comedy. Williams did the same on Dead Again and The Secret Agent.
  • Nicole Kidman has been left off of all marketing on Just Go With It due to her current status as box office poison. Rather, more of the focus has been placed on newcomer Brooklyn Decker.
  • Another case of 'Sir Not Appearing On This Poster' is The Dilemma. One would not even know that it is an ensemble film with Jennifer Connelly, Winona Ryder, Queen Latifah and Channing Tatum in the cast (instead, the poster just shows Vince Vaughn and Kevin James grinning).
  • Probably because she's played by not-a-name actress Greta Gerwig, the trailer for the Russell Brand-led Arthur remake barely includes her character -- even though she's the Adult Child title character's Love Interest. Instead, the trailer gives priority to his relationships with the woman he doesn't want to marry (Jennifer Garner) and his nanny (Helen Mirren), both of whom also appear on the poster and get higher billing.
  • Blades of Glory tended to overlook the Van Waldenbergs in their advertisements. This was despite them being the main villains and Love Interest of the movie and all three being played by relatively well-known and funny actors.
    • In an even stranger case, some TV and online ads left out Jon Heder despite being the film's second billed actor.
  • Brian Cox in Red. He didn't appear in any of the trailers or posters but plays a very large and significant role in the movie.
    • Especially since he also fits the bill (i.e. Retired Extremely Dangerous), even though he's not actually retired.
  • Jack Nicholson had a prominent role in Broadcast News, but he didn't want to be credited because he didn't want to divert the attention from the eventual Academy Award nominated trio of Holly Hunter, William Hurt and Albert Brooks.
  • Bill Murray originally never appeared in any of the original trailers of Tootsie. Only when the film hit premium cable and video stores did subsequent trailers depict his character.
  • All of the promotional material for Thor left out major supporting characters like Lady Sif (except for one brief shot) and two-thirds of the Warriors Three (except for Hogun, who did and said the least). Even Asgard itself may qualify because almost all of the trailers made it look like very little of the plot took place there.
  • Kevin Bacon is barely in any of the promotional materials for X-Men: First Class despite having a prominent role as the main villain of the film. He's barely recognizable on the very crowded poster and doesn't seem to be in any trailers or commercials.
    • A reversal of this occurs in the trailer for Crazy, Stupid Love. Bacon appears at the very end of the trailer but no mention is made of what his role in the film is.
  • For some reason, the ads for Bad Teacher focus on just Cameron Diaz and Jason Segel and leave out Justin Timberlake entirely.
  • Paul Giamatti wasn't shown in the trailers for The Hangover Part II despite being the biggest name in the film.
  • Robin Williams wanted his animated character Genie to be underemphasized in promotions for Aladdin, because he had done the voicework for less money than usual for someone of his stature, and didn't want them to disproportionately profit from it. However, Disney did not follow the contract he made with them, and the use of celebrity voices in animated films became an industry staple from about that point onward.
  • Inverted with Takers; Zoe Saldana does appear in the trailer, but she isn't mentioned!
  • Chris Messina is in none of the trailers for Devil, despite being the star of the film. Instead, the main focus is placed on the action in the elevator and its cast of unknowns and character actors.
  • Inversion: while it may not be a person per-say, the USS Voyager from Star Trek: Voyager is almost a character on its show. She appeared in several teaser trailers for Star Trek: First Contact (which is based on a previous Star Trek show), despite not appearing in the film at all. Not to mention that her trailer scenes were especially made just for the trailer.
  • The trailers and promotional media for Transformers: Dark of the Moon made it seem as Shockwave was the film's main villain. Then again, it must have helped Sentinel Prime's Face Heel Turn to become a twist (the character only appeared in the teaser trailer, with no clear indication of who he was).
    • What's interesting about the teaser trailer is that Sentinel Prime sports a golden body armor, but in the film his armor is red. This may have either been because they were still unsure about Sentinel's appearance or that they deliberately re-colored him to keep his identity ambiguous.
  • Bryan Cranston is possibly the king of this trope. He is nowhere to be seen in the trailers for Larry Crowne, Contagion, Drive and Red Tails, despite playing major roles in all four films.
  • James Woods was notably absent from the trailer for 1992's Straight Talk despite being the main male character and second only to Dolly Parton in the credits.
  • Although Hayden Panettiere is actually billed in the trailer (and on the posters) for the 2011 US release of Fireflies In The Garden - along with Ryan Reynolds (the film's star), Willem Dafoe, Carrie-Anne Moss, Emily Watson and Julia Roberts - and does have a fairly large supporting role in the film itself, if you blink at the 1:48 mark, you'll miss her in the trailer. This may have something to do with the film having been made when she was somewhat younger than she is now (the movie was filmed in 2007).
  • Inverted in Resnais' Not on the lips. The trailer features André Dussolier, a regular Resnais cast, ranting about not being in this particular Resnais movie.
  • The trailers for Cars 2 for some reason actually do not show Miles Axlerod anywhere at all, making Professor Z look like the film's Big Bad. In the actual movie, Axlerod is the Big Bad, and Professor Z is The Dragon.
  • Despite appearing in the teaser that played after Captain America: The First Avenger, Cobie Smulders' Maria Hill did not appear at all in the full trailer for The Avengers. Clark Gregg's Agent Coulson was also only seen very briefly (from the back), although you can hear his voice.
    • Speaking of the teaser, while every other member of the Avengers were shown, the Hulk was absent. Bruce Banner appeared in a few shots, though. This is likely due to the fact that the movie wasn't finished filming by that point and the special effects were not ready.
    • In both the teaser and the first full trailer, Loki's mystery-army is absent, although there are several shots of people reacting to it coming to Earth, making it all the more mysterious. This was likely done on purpose to continue the speculation surrounding it.
  • Bridesmaids is a pretty extreme case of Trailers Always Lie anyway, but almost all of the ads leave out Chris O'Dowd as the main Love Interest in the film.
  • Sort of happens in New Year's Eve. Depending on the commercial, Sarah Jessica Parker's part was downplayed. Also, there are so many characters and cameos in the movie (because of the All-Star Cast) that quite a few of them never make it into the commercials.


Live Action TV

  • On Doctor Who in the 1980s, The Master would often be disguised in his plots against the Doctor. Since the show was serialized at the time, it would often be the case that the disguise hadn't been revealed to the audience prior to the end of part one. As a result, a pseudonym would be used in the credits for actor Anthony Ainley.
    • Rory was omitted from the trailer and cast list for the 2010 season finale to keep his resurrection a secret.
  • The trailer for season 4 of Heroes curiously leaves out any scenes of Mohinder, despite being rather long and featuring every other main character prominently (plus several new ones) and the actor confirming that he's returning. This gives the overall impression he's not part of the season.
    • He appeared eventually, dead three months before the start of the events of the new season. He got better.
  • Beth is missing from most promos and team shots of Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior, and even from the Backdoor Pilot.


Professional Wrestling


Video Games

  • In Metal Gear Solid 2 Sons of Liberty, all the pre-release screenshot either leave out Raiden as a main character or replace him with Snake, which made many, many people mad once they played the game and realized that they weren't playing as Snake. Raiden's appearance was dictated by a focus group in order to attract more teenage girls, who didn't like playing as old men. Then they decided not to market Raiden's existence at all. It's easy to see why Hideo Kojima is considered the greatest troll to ever live.
  • Auto in Mega Man 9 does not appear in the character lists of said game in either the official American or Japanese sites. Ironically, while Auto is featured and described in the Wii Operations Guide, Eddie and Beat are not, and no personal information on the Robot Masters was provided. As for non-appearances in an actual trailer, there's Hornet Man, whose silhouette never appears in this video.
    • Mega Man Powered Up, a remake of a game that had only six Robot Masters, promoted the fact that there are two new bosses added to the game, while in reality there were actually three new bosses. Granted, the unmentioned boss was a Warmup Boss that doesn't even show up in the Boss Rush challenges, but still...
  • When Super Smash Bros. Brawl was first revealed, the normal form of Samus that has been in the previous two games appeared briefly to perform her Final Smash. Apart from her character artwork, no other media featuring Samus in this form was released until the Smash Bros. Dojo finally put up her profile. Take a look at this movie, which was released between the first movie and the Dojo update in question. Do you see any trace of Samus in a Power Suit anywhere? Didn't think so.
    • Relatedly, when the Dojo was relaunched in May 2007, Snake was not featured anywhere on the site, with the exception of E3 and Nintendo World 2006 videos. This means that new media of Snake was not released until Konami decided to show off footage of Snake in Brawl in a conference.
  • The only Elite Beat Agents seen in advertising (and Super Smash Bros. Brawl) were J, Derek, Morris, and Commander Kahn. Who would have guessed that there would still be Agent Spin, Agent Chieftain, and the Elite Beat Divas squad?
    • To be fair, Chieftain and the Divas are both secret unlockable characters.
  • Yuri was left out of original trailers for Shadow Hearts: Covenant, with edited scenes showing Nicolai in his place instead.
  • In Assassin's Creed, Desmond Miles, the real-life protagonist is never shown in gameplay trailers or game footage for any installments of the series, though this is partly because his part of the game is purely exposition and that it's still technically a twist if you haven't played the first game yet. That was part of the game's mystique: the original trailers showing Altair would suddenly distort and get static from the Animus, hinting that there was more to the game than first appeared.
    • Though Kristen Bell accidentally spoiled the big reveal in some pre-release interviews.
    • The novelizations of the games run with this, focusing on the past characters and completely ignoring the Animus and Desmond, even changing a few scenes (like Minerva calling Desmond by name) to focus on the assassin part of the franchise.
  • For the longest time, Garrus Vakarian was this for Mass Effect 2. He wasn't shown in any videos or screenshots outside of when you meet him on Omega for the first time. This to preserve the surprise that he gets half his face blown off shortly after you recruit him. While he's since been shown in screenshots for subsequent DLC... he still doesn't have an official biography on the official website, despite the game being out for nearly 10 months.
    • Many players of both games did not even know female Shepard existed. She is not featured in any of the trailers, promotional material, documentation or game box. Fortunately for FemShep fans, this is changing. Recent news indicates that BioWare intends to include the lesser-known version of the protagonist into promotional materials.
  • Despite being an important character in the Golden Sun series and a Memetic Badass to the fandom, Kraden didn't even have official artwork until promo material for Dark Dawn, the long-awaited third game.
    • Speaking of Dark Dawn, Rief didn't make any appearance in the early promo art. Probably justified: two characters in said image were redesigned before the game's release, proving that Camelot hadn't finished the characters yet when they released that art.
  • Advertising for Portal 2 focuses almost exclusively on Atlas and P-body, and Chell only gets the final released trailer in the spotlight. Atlas and P-body star in the co-op campaign that chonologically takes place after the main single-player game, and Chell doesn't even meet them until the end of her story.
  • Japanese previews of Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn kept secret the fact that Ike and the Griel Mercanaries were going to return in the game.


Web Original

  • Played ridiculously straight in Chaos Fighters: Chemical Warriors-KIMIA when only 2 protagonists were mentioned in the trailer post out of the more than 10 characters who exist in the web serial.
  • Inverted (or arguably just played straight, considering Monty Python) by the YGOTAS movie trailer


Western Animation

  • The week that Scooby's All-Star Laff-A-Lympics premiered, TV Guide's print ad showed Jeannie (from her 1973 CBS cartoon) and Josie and the Pussy Cats as members of the Scooby Doobies team. All of which did not appear on the show due to clearance issues with their rights holders (Columbia Pictures, Radio Comics).
  • The promotions for the Futurama episode "Neutopia" got a lot of mileage out of the gender bent Planet Express crew, though what wasn't shown was their genderless forms beforehand. A bunch of minor characters also get subjected to the gender changes, but their forms aren't shown either.
  • DVD covers for The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes, as well as promo artwork at iTunes and Netflix, almost always omit Avengers who have yet to receive solo movies in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
  • Despite being portrayed as being major characters in the show's plot, neither Lugnut nor Sari Sumdac appear in the Japanese opening for Transformers Animated.
  • The first trailer for Dreamworks Animation's Rise of the Guardians is missing Jack Frost, intended as the film's viewpoint character. In fact, it's apparently to the point where Jack has been edited out of shots he appears in the actual film, presumably to focus on getting across the premise of a Holiday flavored superhero team.
  • The original British title of The Pirates Band of Misfits was The Pirates! In An Adventure With Scientists, and the British trailer prominently features Charles Darwin, who is one of the main characters. Not only does Darwin disappear entirely from the American trailer, but the word "scientists" is excised from the title entirely. Apparently, science just isn't box office draw in the United States.
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