Based on the 1949 namesake novel by Edward Streeter, ‘Father of the Bride’ is a sprawling film franchise. In 1950, Elizabeth Taylor, Joan Bennett, Spencer Tracy and Joan Bennett starred in the first cinematic adaptation. It was followed by the sequel ‘Father’s Little Dividend,’ with most of the actors from the first film reprising their roles. It was remade in 1991 with Steve Martin, Diane Keaton and Kimberly Williams. It has its own sequels, ‘Father of the Bride Part II,’ which came out in 1995 and the 2020 short film ‘Father of the Bride Part 3(ish).’ In 2022, a second remake premiered. The new movie revolves around a Cuban-American family and stars Andy García and Gloria Estefan. If you have watched various ‘Father of the Bride’ films and are curious about similar films, we have the perfect list of recommendations to fit your taste. You can watch most of these movies similar to ‘Father of the Bride’ on Netflix, Hulu, or Amazon Prime.
7. License to wed (2007)
In ‘License to Wed,’ young lovers Ben Murphy (John Krasinski) and Sadie Jones (Mandy Moore) are set to get married. Sadie has always dreamt of getting married at St. Augustine’s, her family church. Only problem is that Ben must convince Frank Littleton (Robin Williams), the eccentric Reverend, that they must follow his prenuptial course. Although the film received poorly, Williams was as charismatic and impressive in it as ever. In both ‘Father of the Bride’ and ‘License to Wed,’ much of the comedy stems from the eccentricities of certain characters and the pandemonium surrounding the wedding.
6. The Proposal (2009)
Margaret Tate (Sandra Bullock), executive editor-in chief of a New York-based book publishing company, announces her engagement to Andrew Paxton (Ryan Reynolds), just as she is about to be deported to Canada. Margaret and Andrew came up with a mutually-beneficial arrangement, and Andrew travels to Alaska with Margaret to see his family. Powered by its stellar cast, ‘The Proposal’ is an utterly joyful film to watch. The film turns most romantic comedy tropes on their head from the beginning. In both ‘Father of the Bride’ and ‘The Proposal,’ meeting the would-be in-laws becomes a hectic experience.
5. Meet the Parents (2000
Like several other entries in the list, the narrative of ‘Meet the Parents’ closely resembles that of ‘Father of the Bride.’ Greg (Ben Stiller) accompanies his girlfriend Pam to Long Island for her sister’s wedding and meets Jack Byrnes (Robert De Niro), Pam’s father and a former CIA agent. Although Jack is initially cordial toward Greg, he soon begins questioning Greg’s choices in life. De Niro leads the film’s cast with an outstanding performance. Thematically, ‘Meet the Parents’ is quite similar to ‘Father of the Bride.’ De Niro portrays the disgruntled father of the girl with much gusto.
4. How I became a Russian (2019).
‘How I Became Russian’ is a Russian-Chinese romantic comedy film. Peng Peng is a young Chineseman. Peng Peng falls in love with Ira Platanova, a beautiful Russian girl. He travels to Russia to prove to her family that he is the right match. Hilarity ensues after his father-in-law sets up a series of tests for him. He must pass with flying colors to win the older man’s approval. ‘How I Become Russian’ offers an unconventional take on the familiar tropes. While the Russian setting is unfamiliar, Peng Peng’s trials aren’t. We have seen them in one form or other in ‘father of the Bride’ and other entries in the list.
3. Why Him? (2016)
In ‘Why Him,’ Ned Fleming (Bryan Cranston) becomes the agitated father when he discovers that his daughter’s new boyfriend, Laird Mayhew (James Franco), is an eccentric and foul-mouthed multi-millionaire. Laird’s over-the-top personality flabbergasts Ned, who can’t believe that his daughter is dating someone like Laird. Laird, on the other hand, is a child who refuses grow up. Like ‘Father of the Bride,’ ‘Why Him?’ is ultimately about family. Everything Laird does is motivated by his desire to be part Fleming’s family.
2. My Big Fat Greek Wedding (2002)
‘My Big Fat Greek Wedding’ is an earnest celebration of Greek culture. Ian Miller meets Fotoula “Toula” Portokalos, and they fall in love. Soon, Ian meets her family, and they become happy friends. ‘My Big Fat Greek Wedding’ is a quintessential immigrant film. It showcases the beauty of Greek culture while underscoring America’s role as a perfect melting pot. The film is also about acceptance, love, and family — themes it shares with ‘Father of the Bride.’ In 2016, a sequel to the original, titled ‘My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2’ was released. A third film is in development.
1. Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner (1967)
‘Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner’ is one of the most important films of the 1960s. It was one of the first films that portrays interracial relationships positively. The story revolves around Joanna Drayton, who brings her African American fiancé, Dr. John Wade Prentice (Sidney Poitier), to meet her parents, Matt Drayton (Spencer Tracy) and Christina Drayton (Katharine Hepburn).
Although Draytons are liberals, their initial reaction to their daughter’s new relationship is an utter surprise. ‘Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner’ is the final time Spencer and Hepburn worked together. Seventeen days after filming had finished, Spencer died. Like ‘Father of the Bride,’ and others on the list, ‘Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner’ has a disapproving father-in-law, but his objection stems from the fear that his daughter and her would-be husband will not find acceptance in the contemporary society.
Continue reading: Is the Father of the Bride based on a True Story or Fiction?