High school comedies have been hilariously gracing the big screen since the 1980s. But nothing could (and perhaps ever will) top the popularity of American Pie. This raucous comedy turned into a huge franchise. American Pie is essentially a teen sex comedy that instantly became a huge hit with its audience. Starting in 1999, the movie series led to four sequels and five spin-offs over a period of 23 years.
The original American Pie series has four movies, and the later spin-off series has five movies, making it a total of nine comedies that earned the entire franchise a profit of over a billion dollars. Besides its box office success, the movies themselves have become iconic in the teenage comedy space, with their dialogue and characters being popular memes.
Based on the characters created by Adam Herz, all the stories of the franchise are set in East Great Falls High school, which remains the only common element across the nine films. The four movies in the American Pie series are somewhat connected to each other, each sequel taking off from where the previous one left. But, the five spin-off movies in the American Pie Presents series are all independent stories and have no relation whatsoever to the original four movies.
From the very first American Pie of 1999 to American Pie Presents: Girls’ Rules, the series is a wild joyride of high school friends and their sexual escapades. Now, with so many characters and so many stories to follow, it’s easy to get confused as to which movie comes first and how to watch each of the American Pie movies in order. Although the original four stories are connected, you can also watch them as standalone movies. Despite the common characters, the events in each movie are quite different. Once you know the main characters, it gets quite easy to follow.
There are many ways you can watch the entire movie series. One – you can watch the four original stories as a complete set and totally ignore the spin-offs. Or, you can watch each of the spin-offs as standalone movies since their stories are not connected. The third option is to watch the entire franchise. But for that, you need to watch it in order.
We put together a handy guide on how you can watch all the movies in the American Pie franchise in order of chronology and their release dates.
‘American Pie’ Movie & Spinoff Release Dates
1. American Pie — July 9, 1999
2. American Pie 2 — August 10, 2001
3. American Wedding — August 1, 2003
4. American Pie Presents: Band Camp — December 26, 2005
5. American Pie Presents: The Naked Mile — December 19, 2006
6. American Pie Presents: Beta House — December 26, 2007
7. American Pie Presents: The Book of Love — December 22, 2009
8. American Reunion — April 6, 2012
9. American Pie Presents: Girls’ Rules — October 6, 2020
How to Watch the ‘American Pie’ Movies in Chronological Order
The original series consists of four connected movies. They follow a group of five friends – Jim (Jason Biggs), Kevin Myers (Thomas Ian Nicholas), Chris “Oz” Ostreicher (Chris Klein), Paul Finch (Eddie Kaye Thomas), and Steve Stifler (Seann William Scott). The boys from East Great Falls High School find themselves on a series of hilarious and crazy sexual adventures starting during high school and then leading all the way up through their college days and finally into their adult lives. Their stories ultimately conclude with a wedding and a final reunion after many years.
The characters from this original series became a huge pop culture phenomenon, not only in America but around the world. Their popularity made the series a beloved classic amongst both teenagers and young adults in the 2000s. Many of the members of the American Pie cast have gone on to star in huge projects. You can watch this series in the following chronological order, where each story leads to the next one.
American Pie (1999)
The very first movie of the series, American Pie paved the way for a whole new school of high school comedies. It is also the first movie you need to watch before you watch anything in this series. This movie introduces Jim, Kevin, Oz, Finch, and Stifler, Jim’s father Noah (Eugene Levy), and Stifler’s mom (Jennifer Coolidge). among a few other characters that then became constants for the next three sequels.
American Pie follows the five high school friends who make a pact to lose their virginity before they all graduate high school and head to college. That is, except for Stifler, who claims to have lost his virginity before his friends. So, they plan to go to prom with their respective girlfriends to complete their mission. The series is packed with funny and stupid mistakes and some unfortunate events.
Directed by Paul Weitz, American Pie stars Jason Biggs, Chris Klein, Edie Kaye Thomas, Alyson Hannigan, Natasha Lyonne, Thomas Ian Nicholas, Seann William Scott, Tara Reid, Mena Suvari, Jennifer Coolidge, and Eugene Levy in major roles.
American Pie 2 (2001)
The second movie in the series, American Pie 2, follows the same group of friends on yet another adventure when they are on their summer vacation.
Jim, Kevin, Oz, Finch, and Stifler have been away at school, away from their gang for a year now. So, for the summer holidays, they decide to reunite at a rented beach house on Lake Michigan and have the ultimate party of the season. But as to be expected from this group, the plan does not go well, and they end up in trouble. Between seducing women in a nearby house to mistaking super glue for lubricant, this film cranks the expected sex-comedy antics from the first film up a notch.
American Pie 2 also features the same main cast as the first one and is directed by James B. Rogers.
American Wedding (2003)
For the third installment of the series, Jim, Stifler, Kevin, and Finch reprise their roles, along with Jim’s girlfriend Michelle (Alyson Hannigan) and his dad, Noah.
Jim and Michelle who have been dating off and on since high school, are about to get married. But the focus of the story is on Stifler, who plans an outrageous bachelor party for Jim, albeit with all his antics. As everyone, including Jim and Michelle’s friends and families, gather for the big day, things take a hilarious turn. This franchise installment tests Jim and Stifler’s friendship in a more heightened way. The sex-comedy antics typical of the larger franchise are also balanced out with more serious themes around marriage.
Directed by Jesse Dylan, American Wedding also includes January Jones and Fred Willard in major roles.
American Reunion (2012)
The last movie in the series, American Reunion brings the gang of boys back together for one last time. The story is set after a decade from Jim and Michelle’s wedding, as is the release of the movie.
The story follows the five friends meeting each other at their high school reunion and discovering that despite the distance and the time, their friendship is still alive. Though they are all adult responsible men at this point, the boys try to relive their high school days with one last hoorah. But nothing is what used to be when they were in high school and things take a weird turn.
Directed by Jon Hurwitz and Hayden Schlossberg, this fourth and final installment in the original American Pie series sees most of the original cast members reprising their roles.
‘American Pie Presents’ Movies in Chronological Order
Between American Pie 2 and American Reunion, four spin-off movies were released under the franchise between 2005 and 2009, with a final movie released in 2020. These five movies have a completely new cast and creator team with a few of the older cast members returning to the same roles. For instance, Eugene Levy continues his role as Noah Levenstein for the first four movies. You can watch the five movies in the following order or, you can watch any of them as a standalone movie.
American Pie Presents: Band Camp (2005)
The first in the spin-off series, this movie focuses on Stifler’s younger brother, Matt (Tad Hilgenbrinck) who is sent to a band camp for the summer after he becomes a riot in high school. At the camp, things get interesting when he meets his childhood sweetheart.
American Pie Presents: The Naked Mile (2006)
This movie also features a member of Stifler’s family, his cousin, Erik (John White). Erik seems to have carried on the legacy of his infamous older cousin and plans to lose virginity in a race where people run naked.
American Pie Presents: Beta House (2007)
This story sees Erik return, but this time as a college freshman. This movie also introduces another cousin of Stifler’s, Dwight (Steve Talley), who leads the frat house where Erik also pledges and continues with their shenanigans. But when a group of geeks tries to shut down the frat house, the cousins will do anything, no matter how wild it is, to keep their fraternity alive.
American Pie Presents: The Book of Love (2009)
The plot of this movie follows three virgin high schoolers at East Great Falls High who land on a tattered sex manual from the school library, compiled by the students over forty years. With incomplete information and sex advice, the three find themselves in crazy and stupid situations, trying to lose their virginity.
American Pie Presents: Girls’ Rule (2020)
Moving away from the boys and their wild ways with sex, this ninth and latest installment in the American Pie franchise sees a gang of girls. In their senior year of high school at East Great Falls High, five friends get together to channel their girl power and get whatever and whoever they want before they graduate.