Now that Star Wars: The Force Awakens has been unleashed and the entire world is going back for a second or third viewing of the cinematic juggernaut, other highly anticipated releases have been announced for 2016 that are whetting film buffs' appetites.
From sequels (Zoolander 2) to reboots (The Jungle Book) and superheroes making their big screen debuts (Gambit, Doctor Strangelove), 2016 is set to offer a cornucopia of thrilling entertainment to please every demographic. Fans will finally get to see their favorite actors/directors making good on promises made at Comic-Con to deliver their best work yet.
Get your new year's resolution checklists out, hardcore cinephiles! How many of these movies will you cross off the list this year? Which will live up to expectations and which will disappoint? All will be revealed soon at a theater near you!
1.Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice
The trouble with teasing an audience for a franchise too far in advance is that moviegoers can become numb to the ubiquitous marketing campaign. Not that we've lost interest, but with so many great action hero movies that have come and gone, we wonder if we've missed the Superman/Batman face-off. But fear not! On March 25th, we will see Henry Cavill reprise his role as Superman, and the public will finally see if the controversial casting choice of Ben Affleck as Batman was the right one. Based on what we see from the trailer, we think he'll be just fine. Add to that Wonder Woman's big screen debut by Israeli model Gal Godot, you know you're going to be in line on opening night for what looks to be an epic showdown.
Who ya gonna call? This time around, the spectre-chasing squad is led by Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, Kate McKinnon and Leslie Jones. It'll be fab to see an all-female power team kick some apparition ass. We're particularly excited for the cameo appearances from original cast members Bill Murray, Dan Akroyd, Ernie Hudson, Sigourney Weaver and Annie Potts! Prepare yourselves to get slimed come July 15.
The foul-mouthed antihero is finally getting his own movie and it's going to be an action-packed riot. Fans had mixed feelings over the casting of Ryan Reynolds in 2011's Green Lantern, but the sardonic humor of Deadpool is definitely in Reynold's wheelhouse, as evidenced by the leaked test footage of him in the titular role. His sneak-peak portrayal of the antihero shows promise that he's gonna nail it on February 12.
4. The Jungle Book
This isn't Disney's first foray into adaptations of their animated films. But unlike 101 Dalmations (1996) and Alice In Wonderland (2010), this is actually a reboot of the first live action adaptation of Rudyard Kipling's The Jungle Book from 1994, starring Jason Scott Lee. That film focused on Mowgli as an older man after having left the jungle to experience life in British-colonial India. This time, Iron Man director Jon Favreau takes us into the heart of a cinematically stunning jungle to walk with beasts to follow the adventures of the boy who was raised by a pack of wolves, Mowgli. And with Scarlett Johansson as the hypnotic snake, Kaa, we can't help but to trussssst in this exciting adaptation when it opens April 15.
5. X-Men: Apocalypse
For those who stuck around after the final credits of X-Men: Days Of Future Past, we were teased with an introduction to Apocalypse in ancient Egypt, indicating that the supervillain has been around for quite some time. Fans from the comics are familiar with his given name, En Sabah Nur, which means "The First One," and it implies that he must have a pretty exhaustive list of wreaking havoc. For those of us not familiar with the evildoer, we'll finally get to see what his deal is.
The next installment in the X-Men franchise looks to be their darkest yet, with returning mutant ensemble members Jennifer Lawrence, James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, and newcomers Olivia Munn, Sophie Turner and Oscar Isaac as Apocalypse. But 20th Century Fox is in for some competition when another studio releases their big sequel as well on May 27. I wonder if you'll go mad, deciding which one to see first. Read on to find out what that movie is if you're curiouser.
6. Zoolander 2
The runway is once again open for the antics of Derek Zoolander (Ben Stiller) and Hansel (Owen Wilson). It's going to be a riot seeing the haute-mess couture and over the top hilarity when the international supermodels take over Rome to track down the perpetrator responsible for attacking pop stars. The paparazzi is standing by. And so are we, on February 12th.
7. Captain America: Civil War
The battle lines are drawn. A regulation keeping superhuman activity at bay forces the superheroes to register with the government due to political tension. However, not everyone is on board, and the conflict leads them to turn on each other. In addition to Robert Downey Jr. and Chris Evans engaged in a smackdown, we'll be introduced to yet another version of the web-slinging hero, Spiderman, played by Tom Holland. Who will prove victorious? We'll have to wait and see on May 6th, and it looks to be certified gold.
8. Suicide Squad
This creepy franchise from the DC Comics universe features a gang of supervillains enlisted by the government to participate in a black ops assassination, and boasts the star powers of Will Smith and Viola Davis. But what everyone has been talking about is Jared Leto's creepy turn as The Joker. August 5th is so far away it's driving us insane!
9. The Girl On The Train
"The Girl On the Train" is based on the best-selling novel of the same name by Paula Hawkins. The mystery thriller led by Emily Blunt and Justin Theroux is basically going to be this year's Gone Girl, and is sure to have audiences on the edge of their seats. Until then, they're going to have to sit back and wait for October 7th.
10. Finding Dory
Guess who's missing now? It's been 12 years since we found Nemo, and now Disney and Pixar bring us back to the sea in search of the most memorable character from Finding Nemo, Dory, voiced by Ellen Degeneres. The search begins June 17th.
11. The Divergent Series: Allegiant
Tris (Shailene Woodley) and Four (Theo James) flee the boundaries of an enclosed Chicago in search of peace after the horrific revelations at the end of The Divergent Series:Insurgent. In keeping with the tradition of splitting the third installment of dystopian trilogies into two parts like The Hunger Games: Mockingjay, The Divergent Series: Allegiant opens March 18, with part 2 to be released in 2017 as The Divergent Series: Ascendant. The awesome trailer shows it'll be worth the wait!
12. Bridget Jones's Baby
It's been 12 years since Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason and now she's coming back, plus one. After a long absence from Hollywood, we're looking forward to seeing Renee Zellweger reprise the role that captured our hearts in 2001's rom-com Bridget Jones Diary. Colin Firth also returns as Mark Darcy and they are joined by McDreamy himself, Patrick Dempsey. With the distant release date of Sept 16, we're already anxious to see a trailer.
13. Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them
After saying goodbye to Harry Potter five years ago, J.K. Rowling will be transporting us once again to a mythical world. Just not back to Hogsmeade. This prequel of sorts is a book adaptation, and it will introduce us to the Magical Congress of the United States of America starring Eddie Redmayne as Newt Scamander. Rowling herself said that the film will be an "extension of the wizarding world" and that "the laws and customs of the hidden magical society will be familiar to anyone who has read the Harry Potter books or seen the films." All muggles will rejoice come November 18.
Channing Tatum is set to star in his own superhero movie from the X-Men universe as cajun thief Remy LeBeau, a.k.a. Gambit, who was a Marvel character created during the '90s. Written by original X-Men scribe Chris Claremont himself, the origin story of the mutant who wields explosive playing cards should be an adrenaline-infused ride. Not to mention, the the former Magic Mike star should be looking pretty hot in those form-fitting hero tights. Gambit opens on October 7th.
15. Untitled fifth Bourne sequel
After 2007's The Bourne Ultimatum, Matt Damon announced that he will not be returning to the franchise unless original director Paul Greengrass were at the helm. After we mourned Damon's absence in 2012's The Bourne Legacy, Damon has confirmed that he will be reprising the role of Jason Bourne now that Paul Greengrass is back on board for the yet-to-be-titled fifth installment of the franchise. Looking forward to seeing him Bourne again on July 29th.
16. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
This project is shrouded in secrecy. Considered more of a spinoff than a sequel, all we know about Rogue One is that it is a heist film revolving around Death Star's construction plans. There is speculation that the desert planet of Geonosis, which was featured in Star Wars: Attack of the Clones, could be revisited since the plans for the Death Star originated there. And there's not much else to reveal. To find out more, you'll have to wait almost a year to see it on December 16th.
17. Doctor Strange
Benedict Cumberbatch plays the character who starts off as an egotistical neurosurgeon who discovers the hidden worlds of magic after a near-fatal accident ruins his career. We can't wait to see what tricks are up his sleeve when the "doctor is in" on November 4th.
18. Pride and Prejudice and Zombies
Seth Grahame-Smith's genre-twisting parody of Jane Austen's classic Pride and Prejudice has been adapted for the screen while the zombie craze is still going strong. The romance that blossoms between Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy after overcoming social class issues have another battle to face when the zombie outbreak surfaces in 19th century England. And it's going to be bloody exciting when February 5th rolls around.
19. Alice Through The Looking Glass
We will be returning to Tim Burton's whimsically dark Underland in this sequel to 2010's Alice In Wonderland, but now the directing torch has been passed to James Bobin. Brace yourself for a race against time to rescue the scoundrel in distress, the Mad Hatter (Johnny Depp) as we step through the looking glass on May 27th. Unless of course, you're opting to go see that other film with mutants battling it out on the same release date. What'll it be, cinephiles: X-Men or Wonderland? These are both heavy hitters.
20. Independence Day: Resurgence
Did we ask for a sequel to the 1996 movie? Did I miss a Kickstarter campaign? It doesn't really matter, as the hype for this sequel is already gaining traction among alien-ass-kicking-blockbuster fans. The aliens respond to a distress signal left by their defeated predecessors and rally their troops once more to obliterate the human race. With Liam Hemsworth on board, so are we. He is joined by Bill Pullman, Jeff Goldblum and Judd Hirsch from the eponymous 1996 film. Fire up the grill and be prepared to celebrate our independence again early on June 24th.
These 2016 certified blockbusters should keep us occupied until Star Wars: Episode VIII, tentatively set for May 26, 2017. There are still too many movies to list here, but one thing is for sure. 2016 is going to be an incredible year at the movies. Until then, which of these highly-anticipated blockbusters do you look forward to most?
H/T - msn, popsugar, etonline, cinemablend, youtube