2020 Preview: 91 Films To Watch Next Year
By Owen Williams Posted 30 days ago
Superheroes have died, new underdogs have risen, and Britain still hasn’t left the EU. 2019 is nearly behind us, and with 2020 not so far away, we’re looking forward to a brand new year bursting with new movies to anticipate. From major literary adaptations like Greyhound and Dune, to foreign-language favourites expected to infiltrate the Oscars (that’s you, Parasite) and a whole new phase of the Marvel Cinematic Universe to prepare for, 2020 promises bold and wildly varied treasures. Read on for the breakdown.
Director: Ben Falcone
Starring: Melissa McCarthy, Bobby Cannavale, Brian Tyree Henry, James Corden
Not, as it might sound, a follow-up to Spy, this is an action comedy about artificial intelligence. Melissa McCarthy stars as a former corporate executive whose grey world is turned upside down when she’s targeted by SkyNet (or at least, this film’s equivalent). McCarthy’s other half Ben Falcone directs from a script by The Boss’ Steve Mallory.
Superintelligence release date 1 January 2020
Director: Guy Ritchie
Starring: Hugh Grant, Matthew McConaughey, Charlie Hunnam, Colin Farrell
Ritchie returns to his gangster manor for plots, schemes, twists, bribery and blackmail in the London marijuana business. Henry Golding, Michelle Dockery, Jeremy Strong and Eddie Marsan bulk up the all-star cast listed above.
The Gentlemen release date 1 January 2020
Director: Taika Waititi
Starring: Taika Waititi, Scarlett Johansson, Thomasin McKenzie, Roman, Griffin Davis
Only Taika Waititi could get away with reimagining Adolf Hitler as a kid’s imaginary friend. But this offers more than just big laughs and sharp mockery: it’s chiefly a poignant coming-of-age involving a friendship between an Aryan boy and a Jewish girl.
Jojo Rabbit release date 3 January 2020
Director: Sam Mendes
Starring: George McKay, Dean-Charles Chapman, Benedict Cumberbatch, Colin Firth **
Sam Mendes’ WWI epic follows two young British soldiers given a seemingly impossible mission: cross enemy territory and deliver a message that will stop a deadly attack on hundreds of soldiers. Mendes and cinematographer Roger Deakins present, incredibly, the entire narrative as if filmed in a single take.
1917 release date 10 January 2020
A Hidden Life
Director: Terrence Malick
Starring: August Diehl, Michael Nyqvist, Matthias Schoenarts, Jürgen Prochnow, Bruno Ganz
Based on real events, A Hidden Life tells the story of the Austrian conscientious objector Franz Jägerstätter, who refused to fight for the Nazis in World War II. After a few more experimental films, festival buzz says this is a return to form for Malick. It also marks the posthumous final screen appearances of the late Michael Nyqvist and Bruno Ganz.
A Hidden Life release date 17 January 2020
Bad Boys For Life
Directors: Adil El Arbi & Bilall Fallah
Starring: Will Smith, Martin Lawrence, Joe Pantoliano, Vanessa Hudgens
Bad Boys For Life presents a belated and anticipated threequel, with Black directors El Arbi and Fallah claiming Michael Bay‘s chair. The plot sees Marcus (now promoted to inspector) and Mike (still a loose cannon) reuniting to take down an Albanian gangster out for revenge against the former partners.
Bad Boys For Life release date 17 January 2020
Director: Trey Edward Shults
Starring: Sterling K. Brown, Lucas Hedges, Kelvin Harrison Jr, Taylor Russell
Shults follows low-key horror It Comes At Night with another stylistically bold and intense drama, this time audaciously cut to an anxious score by Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross and a jukebox soundtrack including Frank Ocean, Animal Collective and Radiohead. The story follows the domestic life and emotional journey of an African-American family in suburban Southern Florida.
Waves release date 17 January 2020.
Director: Destin Daniel Cretton
Starring: Michael B. Jordan, Jamie Foxx, Tim Blake Nelson, Brie Larson
And another inspirational and urgent true story – anyone would think it was awards season. Here, Jordan stars as Bryan Stevenson, a crusading defence attorney in Alabama. In the years following one of his first and most incendiary cases, he negotiates political minefields and faces down overt racism as he battles the stacked legal system of the Deep South.
Just Mercy release date 17 January 2020
Director: Jay Roach
Starring: Nicole Kidman, Charlize Theron, Margot Robbie, John Lithgow
Documentarian Roach charts the fall of powerful Fox News head honcho Roger Ailes (Lithgow) amid several sexual harassment accusations, chiefly starting with Gretchen Carlson (Kidman) and Megyn Kelly (Theron) among the most prominent whistleblowers. The Big Short’s Charles Randolph wrote the film’s screenplay.
Bombshell release date 24 January 2020
The Personal History of David Copperfield
Director: Armando Iannucci
Starring: Dev Patel, Tilda Swinton, Hugh Laurie, Peter Capaldi, Ben Whishaw, Paul Whitehouse, Gwendoline Christie
Charles Dickens’ 1850 classic gets a fresh casting treatment from Armando Iannucci with Dev Patel as the boy who sets out on a quest to become a writer. Co-starring Tilda Swinton, Ben Whishaw and Gwendoline Christie, the film delivers laughs, heart, and a timely reminder about the power of kindness.
The Personal History of David Copperfield release date 24 January 2020
Director: Todd Haynes
Starring: Mark Ruffalo, Anne Hathaway, Tim Robbins, Bill Pullman
Another heavyweight drama based on a true story, Haynes takes a dip into Dark Waters. Ruffalo plays Robert Bilott, an attorney who usually defends chemical companies against lawsuits. On this occasion, however, he uncovers evidence connecting a series of unexplained deaths to one of the world’s largest corporations.
Dark Waters release date 24 January 2020
Queen & Slim
Director: Melina Matsoukas
Starring: Daniel Kaluuya, Jodie Turner-Smith, Bokeem Woodbine, Chloë Sevigny
An otherwise forgettable first date ends in an arbitrary police stop-and-search that goes violently awry, in Matsoukas’ debut feature. As the self-defence killers go on the run, a video of the incident goes viral…
Queen & Slim release date 31 January 2020
Director: Nicolas Pesce
Starring: Andrea Riseborough, Demián Bichir, John Cho
Pesce directs a new US reboot of the Japanese Ju-On series, produced (as were the three other American Grudge films to date) by Sam Raimi via his production company, Ghost House. This one sees croaking ghoul Kayako targeting the children of cop Andrea Riseborough.
The Grudge release date 31 January 2020
The Rhythm Section
Director: Reed Morano
Starring: Blake Lively, Jude Law, Sterling K. Brown, Richard Brake
Much delayed (it was originally due in cinemas a year ago), this international spy thriller finds Lively taking on the identity of an assassin, hoping to uncover the truth about the plane crash that killed her family. The film is adapted by Mark Burnell from his own novel, with Bond’s Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson among the producers.
The Rhythm Section release date 31 January 2020
Director: Robert Eggers
Starring: Robbert Pattinson, Willem Dafoe
Eggers’ follow-up to the super unsettling The Witch finds Pattinson (facial hair) and Dafoe (bigger facial hair) going slowly mad in striking black and white on – you’ve guessed it – a lighthouse. Think German Expressionism meets Ingmar Bergman meets Fraggle Rock. It’s had a rapturous reception wherever it’s played on the festival circuit and in the US – get ready for the storm to soon cross the seas.
The Lighthouse release date 31 January 2020
Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn)
Director: Cathy Yan
Starring: Margot Robbie, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Jurnee Smollett-Bell, Ewan McGregor
Robbie returns as Suicide Squad’s unhinged troublemaker Harleen Quinzell (AKA Harley Quinn), now separated from the Joker and leading an all-female super-team. The comic book caper involves them protecting a young girl from the clutches of McGregor‘s villainous Black Mask.
Birds of Prey release date 7 February 2020
Director: Peter Segal
Starring: Dave Bautista, Ken Jeong, Kristen Schaal, Chloe Coleman
Like Schwarzenegger, Stallone, Diesel and Johnson before him, action hero Bautista has been lured by the siren call of a kid-friendly comedy. The result has his trigger-happy secret agent teaching spycraft to the 9-year-old daughter of the family he’s surveilling, to help her with a bullying problem. Hearts are warmed. Possibly.
My Spy release date 7 February 2020
Director: Bong Joon-ho
Starring: Song Kang-ho, Lee Sun-kyun, Cho Yeo-jeong, Choi Woo-shik
Winning the 2019 Palme d’Or in Cannes signals that Bong has been forgiven for taking his last film, Okja, to Netflix. Parasite is a black comedy about an unemployed South Korean family who stumble upon their wealthy neighbours’ surprising secret during a shifty trick of their own.
Parasite release date 7 February 2020
Director: Stephen Gaghan
Starring: Robert Downey Jr, Michael Sheen, Antonio Banderas, Jim Broadbent
Loosely adapted from the second of Hugh Lofting’s venerable novels about the doctor who can talk to animals, the third screen version of the story casts Robert Downey Jr as a Welsh iteration of the title hero. Dolittle arrives – very late – having been beset with production problems and preemptively pegged as a disaster. The above trailer did nothing to disabuse anyone of that notion. Still, maybe it’ll be great.
Dolittle release date 7 February 2020
Director: Jeff Wadlow
Starring: Lucy Hale, Maggie Q, Portia Doubleday, Michael Rooker, Michael Pēna
Arriving via the ubiquitous Blumhouse, Fantasy Island continues a peculiar trend of turning fondly remembered family favourites into horror stories (see also 2019’s The Banana Splits Movie). Peña plays Mr. Roarke, host of the mysterious island where visitors come to live out their wildest fantasies, but don’t necessarily get what they expect…
Fantasy Island release date 14 February 2020
Director: Takashi Miike
Starring: Masataka Kubota, Nao Ōmori, Shōta Sometani, Sakurako Konishi, Becky
A typically violent and gonzo thriller from prolific Japanese arch-mentalist Miike arrives in the shape of First Love. This one revolves around a boxer, a hooker and a drug addict who get mixed up in a drug smuggling scheme that goes awry. Over a single night they’re pursued by a corrupt cop, a yakuza and a triad hitwoman.
First Love release date 14 February 2020
Sonic the Hedgehog
Director: Jeff Fowler
Starring: Ben Schwartz (voice), Jim Carrey, James Marsden, Neal McDonough
The upcoming family-friendly Sonic movie blends live action and animation to adapt the long-running Sega video game series. Sonic (Schwartz) is the blue alien Hedgehog Who Fell to Earth, teaming up with Montana sheriff Marsden to defeat Carrey‘s evil Dr Robotnik. Grown adults got so upset about the first trailer that Sonic’s look had to be completely redesigned.
Sonic the Hedgehog release date 14 February 2020
The King’s Man
Director: Matthew Vaughn
Starring: Harris Dickinson, Ralph Fiennes, Djimon Hounsou, Gemma Arterton, Rhys Ifans
Kingsman 3 offers a prequel exploring the history of the secretive gentlemanly international espionage operation. Set in the early 1900s, its angle is a collection of history’s worst criminals and tyrants joining forces to ignite a war to end all wars. Ifans is Rasputin and Stanley Tucci – not for the first time – plays Merlin. It’s a lot.
The King’s Man release date 14 February 2020
Director: Michael Winterbottom
Starring: Steve Coogan, David Mitchell, Isla Fisher, Sophie Cookson, Asa Butterfield
The 60th birthday party of a retail billionaire (Coogan) on the Greek island of Mykonos is the focus for Michael Winterbottom‘s scathing satire of the mega-rich. Enjoy a Trip into the vulgar and truly awful.
Greed release date 21 February 2020
Like a Boss
Director: Miguel Arteta
Starring: Tiffany Haddish, Rose Byrne, Salma Hayek, Jennifer Coolidge
Miguel Arteta directs a beauty-industry comedy about two best friends running their own cosmetics company. When business takes a downturn, the prospect of a big buyout offer from a notorious titan of the cosmetics industry proves too tempting to pass up, putting Mel (Haddish) and Mia (Byrne)’s lifelong friendship in jeopardy.
Like a Boss release date 21 February 2020
Director: Jessica Hausner
Starring: Emily Beecham, Ben Whishaw, Kerry Fox, Kit Connor
Beecham stars as a scientist single mother employed as senior plant breeder at a company developing new species. She creates a genetically modified type of flower that seems to have great therapeutic value. Rather against company policy, she takes a clipping home as a gift for her young son, where she soon discovers there may be side effects…
Little Joe release date 21 February 2020
Director: Dave Wilson
Starring: Vin Diesel, Guy Pearce, Eiza González, Toby Kebbell
Bloodshot sets up a wannabe-franchise action based on the Valiant comics. Diesel plays Angelo Mortalli, a former mob hit-man kidnapped for a secret government program to have his mind wiped and his body superhero-ised with nanites. Of course, it all goes wrong and Mortalli goes rogue, on a quest both for revenge and for the recovery of his memories.
Bloodshot release date 28 February 2020
Director: Autumn De Wilde
Starring: Anya Taylor-Joy, Mia Goth, Miranda Hart, Bill Nighy
Jane Austen’s 1815 novel gets its umpteenth adaptation as photographer and music video De Wilde’s debut feature. Taylor-Joy plays the meddling Emma Woodhouse, fixated on matchmaking on behalf of her best friend Harriet (Goth), while neglecting her own perfect happiness.
Emma release date 28 February 2020
Portrait of a Lady on Fire
Director: Céline Sciamma
Starring: Noémie Merlant, Adèle Haenel, Luàna Bajrami, Valeria Golin
Céline Sciamma’s Cannes favourite is a slow burning, sensual story of forbidden love between an 18th-century painter (Merlant) and her muse (Haenel) on an isolated island in Brittany. Advance word from the festival circuit says it’s as thoughtful as it is intoxicating.
Portrait of a Lady on Fire release date 28 February 2020
Brahms: The Boy 2
Director: William Brent Bell
Starring: Katie Holmes, Ralph Ineson, Owain Yeoman, Christopher Convery
Another year, another creepy doll horror sequel – Brahms: The Boy 2 follows the 2016 original in which the mystery was well and truly explained. It’s hard to see how this will work then, but it seems to involve another family moving into Brahms’ house, happily oblivious of the secret that the audience already knows. They’ll soon learn.
Brahms: The Boy 2 release date 28 February 2020
Calm With Horses
Director: Nick Rowland
Starring: Barry Keoghan, Ned Dennehy, Cosmo Jarvis, Niamh Algar
In darkest rural Ireland, ex-boxer Douglas ‘Arm’ Armstrong has become the feared enforcer for the drug-dealing Devers family, whilst also trying to be a good father to his autistic five-year-old son, Jack. Torn between these two families, Arm’s loyalties are truly tested when he is asked to kill for the first time.
Calm With Horses release date 6 March 2020
Director: Peter Cattaneo
Starring: Kristin Scott Thomas, Sharon Horgan, Davina Sitaram, Jason Flemyng
Based on the true story of the Military Wives Choir, tracing it from its humble beginnings to a global movement with thousands of members, Millitary Wives presents an ensemble making music for change. Thomas and Horgan lead the original group of reluctant singers who band together while their husbands are serving in Afghanistan.
Military Wives release date 6 March 2020
Director: Dan Scanlon
Starring: Tom Holland, Chris Pratt, Octavia Spencer, Julia Louis-Dreyfus
Pixar goes high-fantasy, presenting a modern, suburban world inhabited by elves, unicorns and dragons in Onward. That’s the background for a story of two elf brothers, Ian and Barley Lightfoot, who go on a quest to help them come to terms with the death of their father.
Onward release date 6 March 2020
The Invisible Man
Director: Leigh Whannell
Starring: Elisabeth Moss, Oliver Jackson-Cohen, Storm Reid, Aldis Hodge
Once intended as part of a new series of shared-universe films for the classic Universal monsters, The Invisible Man now apparently arrives as a standalone. The story centres on Moss, whose former boyfriend’s “suicide” turns out not to have been all it seemed. As a Blumhouse project and Whannell‘s follow-up to the excellent Upgrade, the pedigree is promising.
The Invisible Man release date 6 March 2020
Godzilla Vs. Kong
Director: Adam Wingard
Starring: Alexander Skarsgård, Millie Bobby Brown, Kyle Chandler, Ziyi Zhang
The fourth film in Warner/Legendary’s Monsterverse series follows Godzilla, Kong: Skull Island and 2019’s unloved Godzilla: King of the Monsters. Not much is known about the plot, but it’s something about a perilous mission by the Monarch organisation into “uncharted territory”. Return to Skull Island with Godzilla in tow? We’ll see…
Godzilla Vs. Kong release date 13 March 2020
Director: Ira Sachs
Starring: Isabelle Huppert, Brendan Gleeson, Marisa Tomei, Greg Kinnear
Three generations grapple with a life-changing experience during a single, particularly tense day of a their Portuguese vacation in Sachs’ latest. Expect thorny relationship drama led by Isabelle Huppert, among the breathtaking vistas of dense gardens and fairytale villas.
Frankie release date 20 March 2020
Director: Marjane Satrapi
Starring: Rosamund Pike, Anya Taylor-Joy, Sam Riley, Aneurin Barnard
Here’s a new one: comic book scientific history. Specifically, this is based on a graphic novel by Lauren Redniss, and imagines the events surrounding Marie Curie’s pioneering research on radioactivity.
Radioactive release date 20 March 2020
A Quiet Place: Part 2
Director: John Krasinski
Starring: Emily Blunt, Cillian Murphy, Brian Tyree Henry, Djimon Hounsou
Krasinski returns to direct, but not star, in the sequel to A Quiet Place, offering more adventures in a world that has been overrun by deadly creatures highly sensitive to noise, meaning that the surviving humans are forced to live in silence, communicating with sign language. Nothing is yet known about the plot specifics, but we might expect to be introduced to new survivors, and learn a little more about the aliens’ origins.
A Quiet Place: Part 2 release date 20 March 2020
Director: Niki Caro
Starring: Yifei Liu, Donnie Yen, Jet Li, Jason Scott Lee
Offering a slightly different take on the Chinese folktale to the animated 1998 version, Disney’s live-action Mulan nevertheless follows the eldest daughter of an honoured warrior who is spirited, determined and quick on her feet – and becomes one of China’s greatest warriors. No songs or wisecracking dragons this time though.
Mulan release date 27 March 2020
Peter Rabbit 2
Director: Will Gluck
Starring: James Corden, Rose Byrne, Domhnall Gleeson, Davie Oyelowo
Reimagining Beatrix Potter’s charming Edwardian vegetable thief as a cocky 21st-century hooligan seemed to do no harm at the 2018 box office, so here’s more of same. Peter feels like he doesn’t fit with his new family, so runs off to find other friends. But, he soon finds, different isn’t necessarily better.
Peter Rabbit 2 release date 27 March 2020
No Time to Die
Director: Cary Joji Fukunaga
Starring: Daniel Craig, Jeffrey Wright, Lashana Lynch, Rami Malek
Delayed by some high-profile wrangling behind the scenes, Bond 25 finally arrives with True Detective director Fukunaga calling the shots. Craig‘s swan song in the role finds Bond retired from active service, but persuaded into one last mission when CIA buddy Felix Leiter (Wright) asks for a favour. Malek is the villain, although it’s likely we’ll also see Christoph Waltz back as Ernst Blofeld (if only as a cameo).
No Time To Die release date 3 April 2020
The New Mutants
Director: Josh Boone
Starring: Maisie Williams, Anya Taylor-Joy, Alice Braga, Antonio Banderas
Completed more than two years ago and since beset with release date shifts, re-workings and re-shoots, some wondered if this horror-inflected X-Men spin-off would ever see a cinema screen at all. But here it is at long last: a story of younger mutants trying to escape their imprisonment in an eldritch secret facility.
The New Mutants release date 8 April 2020
Director: Paul Weitz
Starring: Kevin Hart, Alfre Woodward, Anthony Carrigan, Paul Reiser
A gear change into drama and pathos for Hart, Fatherhood adapts Matt Logelin’s autobiographical Two Kisses For Maddy. Hart plays the protagonist, whose wife dies in childbirth, leaving him to take care of the baby alone. Logelin’s sub-title was A Memoir of Love and Loss, which seems an apt description.
Fatherhood release date 10 April 2020
Director: Alice Winocour
Starring: Eva Green, Matt Dillon, Lars Eidinger, Sandra Hüller
Shot in various real European Space Agency training facilities, this French drama follows Green as she balances the demands of motherhood with those of preparing for a year’s stint as an astronaut on the International Space Station. Festival buzz has been positive, including an honourable mention from Toronto.
Proxima release date 17 April 2020
The Secret Garden
Director: Marc Munden
Starring: Dixie Egerickx, Colin Firth, Julie Walters, Amir Wilson
Francis Hodgson Burnett’s Edwardian children’s classic gets a handsome-looking new adaptation: the first (not counting a steampunk cosplay oddity) since 1993. Egerickx is the orphaned girl sent to live with an uncle she has never previously met at an isolated Yorkshire manor house.
The Secret Garden release date 17 April 2020
Director: Sarah Gavron
Starring: Bukky Bakray, Kosar Ali, Shaneigha Greyson, D’Angelou Ossei Kissiedu
Rocks offers an unpretentious film about “resilience and the spirit of girlhood” from Suffragette’s Gavron. Rocks (Bakray) is a popular teenager with big dreams for the future, but when she and her brother are threatened with being taken into care, the courageous young girl goes into hiding around London with the help of her “friendship squad”.
Rocks release date 24 April 2020
Director: Cate Shortland
Starring: Scarlett Johansson, David Harbour, Florence Pugh, Rachel Weisz
After a decade as a supporting member of the Avengers, Johansson‘s Natasha finally gets her own movie. How does that work given the events of Endgame? It’s a prequel set just after Civil War, during the time when Natasha goes rogue with Steve Rogers. Antagonism comes via Red Guardian and Taskmaster.
Black Widow release date 1 May 2020
Director: Edward Hall
Starring: Dan Stevens, Isla Fisher, Judi Dench, Leslie Mann
Noël Coward’s genteel supernatural comedy – first performed as a play in 1941 and filmed by David Lean in 1945 – gets a suitably all-star revival. The recently married Stevens and Fisher are haunted by the ghost of Stevens’ first wife Mann, so call in the services of dotty medium Dench.
Blithe Spirit release date 1 May 2020
Director: Quentin Dupieux
Starring: Jean Dujardin, Adèle Haenel, Albert Delpy, Coralie Russie
French writer-director Dupieux (Mr Oizo, Rubber) turns his off-kilter aesthetic to the serial killer genre, in this yarn about a man dangerously fond of his jacket. Expect culty derangement in large measure.
Deerskin release date 8 May 2020
Director: Aaron Schneider
Starring: Tom Hanks, Elisabeth Shue, Stephen Graham, Karl Glusman
Adapting CS Forrester’s 1955 nautical WWII novel The Good Shepherd (nothing to do with the De Niro film of the same name), this follows Hanks’ career officer as he’s handed command of a Navy destroyer (the vessel of the title). He’ll have to fight his own demons to prove that he belongs in the captain’s chair.
Greyhound release date 8 May 2020
Legally Blonde 3
Director: Jamie Suk
Starring: Reese Witherspoon, Alanna Ubach, Jessica Caufiel
Technically the fourth in the series (since there’s already been a straight-to-DVD threequel), Witherspoon here sashays back into the lead as Elle Woods, the apparent ditz who’s a lot smarter than she seems. Previously she stormed Harvard and Washington. This time? That’s still under wraps.
Legally Blonde 3 release date 8 May 2020
The Woman in the Window
Director: Joe Wright
Starring: Amy Adams, Julianne Moore, Gary Oldman, Brian Tyree Henry
Nothing to do with the Fritz Lang’s 1944 film noir, this particular woman in this particular window is adapting AJ Finn’s bestselling 2018 novel. An agoraphobic ends up in the middle of a crime scene while spying on her new neighbours, leaving her with a dilemma with regard to alerting the authorities…
The Woman in the Window release date 15 May 2020
Chris Rock’s Saw
Director: Darren Lynn Bousman
Starring: Chris Rock, Samuel L. Jackson, Max Minghella, Marisol Nichols
A rebootquel of the gory Saw franchise – the ninth Saw to date – the still untitled film is masterminded by and stars Rock, who, it turns out, is a long-term fan. He plays a cop on the trail of a serial killer responsible for a string of gnarly murders. Minghella plays Rock’s partner on the force, Nichols is their captain, and Jackson stars as Rock’s father.
Saw 9 release date 15 May 2020
Fast & Furious 9
Director: Justin Lin
Starring: Vin Diesel, Tyrese Gibson, Chris Bridges, Michelle Rodriguez
Following spin-off Hobbes & Shaw, F&F Part 9 properly returns the franchise focus to Diesel. Nothing’s been revealed about the plot yet, but threads of F&F8 are hanging, with Theron‘s villain Cipher still at large. Expect a degree of vehicular mayhem and some sentiment about family.
Fast & Furious 9 release date 22 May 2020
The Spongebob Movie: It’s a Wonderful Sponge
Director: Tim Hill
Starring: Tom Kenny, Bill Fagerbakke, Rodger Bumpass, Clancy Brown
The third Spongebob movie is a prequel to the TV series, promising the origin story of how a young Spongebob first met the rest of the Bikini Bottom gang on a summer vacation at Camp Coral. We’ve also been told to expect live action and full-CG sequences, and guest appearances from Awkwafina and Snoop Dogg.
The Spongebob Movie: It’s a Wonderful Sponge release date 22 May 2020
Director: Kenneth Branagh
Starring: Ferdia Shaw, Nonso Anozie, Josh Gad, Judi Dench
Based on the bestselling children’s books by Eoin Colfer, Artemis Fowl is the latest in a string of page-to-screen adaptations. Shaw is 12-year-old genius Artemis Fowl, a descendant of a long line of criminal masterminds, seeking to find his father, who has mysteriously disappeared. Along the journey he uncovers a reclusive underground fairy kingdom, and enters a perilous war of wits with the ancient civilization.
Artemis Fowl release date 29 May 2020
Wonder Woman 1984
Director: Patty Jenkins
Starring: Gal Gadot, Kristin Wiig, Chris Pine, Pedro Pascal
The time-travelling sequel to 2017’s Wonder Woman, and the fourth film in total to feature Gadot‘s Amazonian warrior princess, AKA Diana Prince, revisits some early Cold War feuds. The antagonist this time appears to be Wiig‘s Barbara Ann Minerva, AKA Cheetah: an heiress who, through an ancient ritual, acquires supernatural feline powers – but not without a cost to herself.
Wonder Woman 1984 release date 5 June 2020
Director: Nia DaCosta
Starring: Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Tony Todd
Little Woods director DaCosta is behind the camera, but the big name here is Get Out’s Jordan Peele, writer, producer and general driving force behind the passion project. Beyond that, very little is publicly known about the “spiritual sequel” to Bernard Rose’s supernatural slasher adapting Clive Barker’s short story. But we seem to be heading back to the – now much gentrified – Chicago neighbourhoods, where the Candyman legend began.
Candyman release date 12 June 2020
Director: Pete Docter
Starring: Jamie Foxx, Tina Fey, John Ratzenberger, Phylicia Rashad
This new Pixar adventure involves “a journey from the streets of New York City to the cosmic realms to discover the answers to life’s most important questions”. Foxx voices a musician who loses his passion for music, is transported out of his body, and must find his way back with the help of an infant soul learning about herself.
Soul release date 19 June 2020
Director: Shawn Levy
Starring: Ryan Reynolds, Jodie Comer, Lil Rel Howery, Utkarsh Ambudkar, Taika Waititi
Levy, no stranger to the high-concept narrative, tells the unconventional story of a lonely bank teller (Reynolds) who discovers he’s actually a background character in the brutal GTA-style open-world video game Free City. Oh, and he’s the only one capable of saving everyone around him, despite having not much idea of how to survive himself.
Free Guy release date 1 July 2020
The Purge 5
Director: Everardo Gout
Starring: Ana De La Reguera
Even the cast is under wraps for the currently untitled fifth Purge movie, but we do know that it’ll be the final instalment (on film at least; the TV series is ongoing). “When I came up with the idea and pitched it to everybody, they seemed psyched,” franchise writer and creator James DeMonaco has said. “I think it will be a really cool ending, how we take this one home.”
The Purge 5 release date 8 July 2020
Minions: The Rise of Gru
Director: Kyle Balda
Starring: Steve Carell, Pierre Coffin
Expect a summer-holidays merchandising deluge as the Despicable Me franchise dedicates a second spin-off specifically to yellow horrors the Minions. This one’s an origin story, about the slapsticky weirdos’ earliest days working for the then-tyrannical Gru.
Minions: The Rise of Gru release date 10 July 2020
Director: Jason Reitman
Starring: Paul Rudd, Finn Wolfhard, Carrie Coon, McKenna Grace
A direct threequel ignoring the Paul Feig film, with a likely next-generation handover from the original cast to the newcomers. We’d put some fairly confident money on one of the new cast members playing a grown-up Oscar, the son of Peter Venkman and Dana Barrett, who appeared as a baby in Ghostbusters 2.
Ghostbusters 2020 release date 10 July 2020
Bob’s Burgers: The Movie
Director: Loren Bouchard
Starring: Kristen Schaal, H. Jon Benjamin, John Roberts, Dan Mint
These animated off-the-wall hi-jinks take stock of the cult Fox TV cartoon sitcom, set in the Belcher Family’s titular fine fast food establishment. Little to no information has been released about the storyline so far, but we do know it’s a musical.
Bob’s Burgers: The Movie release date 17 July 2020
Director: Christopher Nolan
Starring: John David Washington, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Robert Pattinson, Elizabeth Debicki
Anyone still clamouring for Nolan to be given a Bond film to direct may well be satisfied by this globetrotting action spy thriller (shot in no fewer than seven countries). But the espionage reportedly jostles alongside evolutionary and time-travelling elements, so maybe it won’t be so Bondian at all. What does Tenet even mean in context? As ever with Nolan, we’ll know when we know.
Tenet release date 17 July 2020
Top Gun: Maverick
Director: Joseph Kosinski
Starring: Tom Cruise, Val Kilmer, Miles Teller, Jon Hamm, Ed Harris, Jennifer Connelly
Thirty-four years later, Cruise‘s Pete Mitchell oversees a new class of drone-flying Top Gun candidates drawn from naval aviation. One of his trainees? Bradley Bradshaw, none other than the son of Maverick’s old buddy Goose, who died last time around. Cruise has apparently been learning to fly fighter planes for this one, as one does.
Top Gun: Maverick release date 17 July 2020
Director: Jaume Collet-Serra
Starring: Dwayne Johnson, Emily Blunt, Paul Giamatti, Edgar Ramirez
Get ready for a new Disney comedy adventure, based on one of its theme park rides. Johnson plays cruise skipper Frank, who sees a way out of a financial bind when explorer Blunt offers to pay him to take her on a dangerous expedition to find a lost legend. Think The African Queen meets the Brendan Fraser-era Mummy films.
Jungle Cruise release date 24 July 2020
Director: Daniel Espinosa
Starring: Jared Leto, Matt Smith, Jared Harris
Leto stars as Marvel Comics’ antiheroic Living Vampire. Morbius is a Nobel Prize-winning biochemist who tries to cure a rare blood disease using an experimental treatment that combines electroshock therapy and vampire bats. The results are predictably catastrophic. Like Venom, this is another Spider-Man spin-off from Sony.
Morbius release date 31 July 2020
The Empty Man
Director: David Prior
Starring: James Badge Dale, Samantha Logan, Stephen Root, Joel Courtney
Prior returns with a supernatural horror based on the Boom! Studios comics. On the trail of a missing girl who witnessed the murder of his family, a former cop stumbles upon a secret cult with plans to summon up a terrifying entity.
The Empty Man release date 7 August 2020
Director: Antoine Fuqua
Starring: Mark Wahlberg, Sophie Cookson, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Jason Mantzoukas
Based on D. Eric Maikranz’s novel The Reincarnationist Papers, Fuqua directs an introspective look at the forgotten facts that live on. Marky Mark is a man haunted by unfamiliar memories, who stumbles upon centuries-old secret society The Cognomina. Its members possess total recall of their past lives, and have been agents of change throughout history.
Infinite release date 7 August 2020
Director: Hamish Grieve
Starring: Terry Crews, Will Arnett
Paramount Animation partner with WWE Studios for an animated fantasy tale about wrestlers, monsters, and monster wrestling. In a world where monsters are tame and monster wrestling is a popular sport, a young girl aims to follow in her father’s footsteps by training a green contender.
Rumble release date 14 August 2020
The One and Only Ivan
Director: Thea Sharrock
Starring: Angelina Jolie, Bryan Cranston, Helen Mirren, Sam Rockwell, Danny DeVito
More animation, in this case adapting K.A. Applegate’s award-winning children’s novel, comes to the silver screen. Ivan is a silverback gorilla in a cage in the Big Top Mall. The arrival of baby elephant Ruby stirs sympathies and memories in Ivan, senior elephant Stella and Bob the dog, and together they plan some improvements…
The One and Only Ivan release date 14 August 2020
Bill and Ted Face the Music
Director: Dean Parisot
Starring: Keanu Reeves, Alex Winter, William Sadler
A much-belated threequel to the much beloved first two Bill and Ted movies is finally on the cards. 29 years on from their bogus journey, our heroes have yet to fulfill their rock and roll destiny. But when a visitor from the future warns them that only their song can save life as we know it and bring harmony to the universe, the now middle-aged best friends set out on a new adventure.
Bill & Ted Face the Music release date 21 August 2020
Director: Liesl Tommy
Starring: Jennifer Hudson, Forest Whitaker, Mary J. Blige, Marc Maron, Marlon Wayans
Another year, another musical biopic: this one follows Aretha Franklin‘s life from her early days singing in her father’s church choir to her latterday status as civil rights activist and iconic soul superstar: the first woman inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame. Franklin personally chose Hudson to play her.
Respect release date 21 August 2020
The Conjuring 3
Director: Michael Chavez
Starring: Vera Farmiga, Patrick Wilson, Sterling Jerins
The eighth film in the Conjuring universe, but only the third numbered instalment in the core series, is on the way. Series mastermind James Wan refers to these central episodes as “the mothership”, opening the “real life” case files of supernatural investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren. Number III revolves around a man on trial for murder, whose defence is that he was possessed when it happened.
The Conjuring III released date 11 September 2020
Last Night in Soho
Director: Edgar Wright
Starring: Anya Taylor-Joy, Matt Smith, Thomasin McKenzie, Diana Rigg, Terence Stamp
The twist into psychological horror for the knockabout Wright is said to be inspired by classics like Don’t Look Now and Repulsion. It takes place in the London of the Swinging Sixties; a time period lead character McKenzie gets to experience through a mysterious connection with Taylor-Joy.
Last Night in Soho release date 18 September 2020
Director: Stefano Sollima
Starring: Michael B. Jordan, Jamie Bell, Cam Gigandet
Based on a doorstop thriller novel by Tom Clancy, but not one that centres on Jack Ryan, this focuses on his other major recurring character, John Clark. An origin story set in the Vietnam era, Without Remorse reveals how Clark shifted career from Navy SEAL to CIA agent.
Without Remorse release date 18 September 2020
The Many Saints of Newark
Director: Alan Taylor
Starring: Alessandro Nivola, Jon Bernthal, Vera Farmiga, Michael Gandolfini, Ray Liotta
A prequel to classic TV behemoth The Sopranos, The Many Saints of Newark charts the buildup of the Mafia family eventually run by Tony Soprano, and the Newark riots of the 1960s serve as the dramatic backdrop. The young Tony is played by Michael Gandolfini, son of James. Series creator David Chase wrote the screenplay.
The Many Saints of Newark release date 25 September 2020
Death on the Nile
Director: Kenneth Branagh
Starring: Kenneth Branagh, Gal Gadot, Letitia Wright, Sophie Okonedo, Russell Brand
Following 2017’s Murder on the Orient Express, here’s another much-loved case for Agatha Christie’s ace detective Hercule Poirot, with Branagh once again taking the lead. Swapping snowy Swiss tracks for the hot sun of Egypt, the film promises another all-star cast, among whom skulks a killer (or killers).
Death on the Nile release date 9 October 2020
Director: David Gordon Green
Starring: Jamie Lee Curtis, Judy Greer, Andi Matichak, Anthony Michael Hall
David Gordon Green‘s reboot of the Michael Myers stab-a-thon series continues, with this being the second part of the trilogy he began in 2018. Curtis returns once again as Laurie Strode, battling Myers since 1979, somehow still at it. There’s no killin’ what can’t be killed. Trilogy capper Halloween Ends is due in 2021.
Halloween Kills release date 16 October 2020
Director: Robert Zemeckis
Starring: Anne Hathaway, Octavia Spencer, Stanley Tucci, Chris Rock
Roald Dahl’s terrifying, barking mad tale speaks of a boy and his grandmother who get turned into mice and still have to battle a coven of witches with a horrible plan for all the children in the world. Zemeckis is promising to hew closer to Dahl’s 1973 novel than the previous Nicolas Roeg film.
The Witches release date 16 October 2020
Everybody’s Talking About Jamie
Director: Jonathan Butterell
Starring: Max Harwood, Richard E. Grant, Sharon Horgan, Shobna Gulati
Jonathan Butterel helms an adaptation of the hit Brit musical. The based-on-a-true-story stage show centres on a teenager in Northern England (Sheffield in the story, Newcastle in real life) who is determined to attend his year 11 prom in drag, to the disapproval of the school.
Everybody’s Talking About Jamie release date 21 October 2020
Director: Robert Schwentke
Starring: Henry Golding, Iko Uwais, Samara Weaving
Seven years after G.I. Joe: Retaliation comes an origin story with Henry Golding as the crucial G.I. Joe Team member Snake Eyes, taking over from Ray Park with a new iteration for the prequel.
Snake Eyes release date 23 October 2020
Director: Chloé Zhao
Starring: Angelina Jolie, Salma Hayek, Brian Tyree Henry, Kit Harington, Gemma Chan
The ensemble release finally marks the MCU debut of the cosmic Jack Kirby superteam. The near-immortal Eternals are a race of ancient superhumans, created millions of years ago by beings known as the Celestials. Sadly the latter created a monstrous off-shoot known as the Deviants at the same time. The Eternals have protected humanity from the Deviants ever since.
Eternals release date 6 November 2020
Director: Denis Villeneuve
Starring: Timothée Chalamet, Rebecca Ferguson, Oscar Isaac, Josh Brolin, Jason Momoa
For his third sci-fi in succession following Arrival and Blade Runner 2049, Villeneuve takes on the apparently impossible: Frank Herbert’s ’60s space opera behemoth Dune. The results promise to be extraordinary. And the fact that this is actually only adapting half of Herbert’s first Dune novel means the sprawling narrative should have space to stretch.
Dune release date 20 November 2020
Director: Reinaldo Marcus Green
Starring: Will Smith
Smith stars in a biopic centred on Richard Williams, father of tennis stars Venus and Serena. The narrative chronicles Williams’ determination that his daughters should become two of the greatest players in tennis history, despite times of extreme hardship and the small hindrance of his having no background tennis experience.
King Richard release date 27 November 2020
Raya and the Last Dragon
Directors: Paul Briggs & Dean Wellins
Starring: Cassie Steele, Awkwafina
Disney goes back in time to prepare an animation with a Southeast Asian influence. In the fantastical kingdom of Kumandra, sinister forces have invaded, prompting Raya (Steele) to undertake a mission to find the last dragon, a creature she believes has the power to save her world. What she finds is Awkwafina‘s quirky Sisu, a white, pink and teal dragon who also appears in human form.
Raya and the Last Dragon release date 27 November 2020
Coming 2 America
Director: Craig Brewer
Starring: Eddie Murphy, Leslie Jones, Wesley Snipes, James Earl Jones
A sequel to Coming to America taking place 32 years later, Coming 2 America picks up the story of Murphy‘s fish-out-of-water Prince Akeem, who travelled to the States in the original looking for a woman not interested in his royal status or fortune. In the new movie, Akeem returns to America on the hunt for his long-lost son.
Coming 2 America release date 18 December 2020
Director: Kirk De Micco
Starring: Lin Manuel Miranda, Paloma Morales
A passion project for Hamilton’s Miranda, Vivo dates back to the days before he made it big on Broadway. With a new home at Sony Pictures Animation, these are the animated high-jinks of a capuchin monkey with adventure in his heart who travels from Havana to Miami to fulfill his destiny.
Vivo release date 18 December 2020
West Side Story
Director: Steven Spielberg
Starring: Ansel Elgort, Rachel Zegler, Corey Stoll
Spielberg‘s first musical adapts Stephen Sondheim and Leonard Bernstein’s classic stage show, itself an updated and relocated retelling of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. The feuding families become warring gangs the Jets and the Sharks. Can Tony and Maria’s love cross that great divide?
West Side Story release date 18 December 2020
Starring: Tom Holland
A decade in development hell, and at time of writing, still without a director, having just lost the chair’s most recent occupant Dan Trachtenberg – Uncharted is still uncertain. But Tom Holland is at least still attached to play the blockbuster video game series’ adventurer Nathan Drake. Sony apparently still hopes to be shooting in early 2020, but making this release date will be tight. We’ll believe it when we see it.
Uncharted (supposed) release date 26 December 2020
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