41 Most Anticipated Movies of 2023

New films from Greta Gerwig, Martin Scorsese, Nia DaCosta, David Fincher and more are on tap next year

2022 was a very good year at the movies, and 2023 promises to be potentially even bigger and even more exciting. While there’s no telling which films will actually deliver, we’ve rounded up 40 of our most anticipated films coming out next year. For some, it’s the combination of director and material (Greta Gerwig and “Barbie”) that piques our interest; for others it’s an exciting sequel (“Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse”); and for others it’s as simple as “Nicolas Cage as Dracula.”

With the caveat that there will surely (and hopefully) be surprises we don’t see coming, here are some of the films we’re most looking forward to in 2023.

Knock at the Cabin

“Knock at the Cabin” (Universal Pictures)

Feb. 3

After making a movie about the beach where you get old (aptly named “Old”), M. Night Shyamalan is back with a movie about the cabin in which you have to kill your family. “Knock at the Cabin” sets up a brutal premise in which a group of believers descend upon a cabin inhabited by two men and their daughter and tell the men they have to kill a member of their family in order to save the world. Are they lying? Is an apocalypse nigh? Will Jonathan Groff sing? All valid questions we can’t wait to find out the answers to. – Adam Chitwood

Magic Mike’s Last Dance

Warner Bros. Pictures

Feb. 10

Eight years after “Magic Mike XXL” was released, Steven Soderbergh will close out the “Magic Mike” trilogy with “Magic Mike’s Last Dance” this spring. Channing Tatum will reprise his role as “Magic” Mike Lane for the final time as Mike sparks a relationship with an older woman (Salma Hayek Pinault) who encourages him to take his act abroad to London, where he must find new dancers and construct a show from the ground up. To mark the grand conclusion, Soderbergh plans to soak in the finale by ending the upcoming movie with a 30-minute dance sequence. Valentine’s Day Weekend, here we come! – Loree Seitz

Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania

Paul Rudd and Jonathan Majors in “Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania” (Marvel Studios)

Feb. 16

Yes, they made a third Ant-Man movie! The kickoff movie of Marvel Studios’ Phase Five sees Ant-Man (Paul Rudd) and his gang of micronauts (including Michael Douglas, Michelle Pfeiffer, Evangeline Lilly and his daughter, now played by Kathryn Newton) zapped into the Quantum Realm. Here they’ll come face-to-face with crazy monsters and human weirdos, as well as the MCU’s new Big Bad, Kang the Conqueror (handsomest man alive Jonathan Majors). Early marketing materials suggest that director Peyton Reed’s latest ant-venture will feature more than the usual shrinking/enlarging comedic shenanigans of the first two films. And we’re excited for an “Ant-Man” movie that will be a little bit bigger. – Drew Taylor

Cocaine Bear

Keri Russell in “Cocaine Bear” (Universal Pictures)

Feb. 24

Once upon a time, a bear got into a duffel bag of cocaine that fell out of a drug-running airplane. Then they made a movie about it. This is that movie. Elizabeth Banks directs the appropriately titled “Cocaine Bear,” which takes that nugget of truth and expands it into a feature-length premise as a black bear goes on a rampage in Georgia. The poster alone has us ready to buy a ticket. – Adam Chitwood

Creed III

Creed III

March 3

Michael B. Jordan makes his directorial debut with the third installment of the “Creed” franchise, which finds him going toe-to-toe with Jonathan Majors. Once again, “Creed III” looks to be both a sports movie and also a film about the world in which Adonis Creed lives, as Majors plays a former friend of his who’s just out of prison and feels displaced because of the system. It’s worth noting that Jordan starred in and produced the criminal justice reform drama “Just Mercy,” so it’ll be interesting to see what “Creed III” has to say about this particular topic – on top of just seeing how Jordan stacks up as a director. – Adam Chitwood

Scream VI

“Scream VI” (Paramount Pictures and Spyglass Media Group)

March 10

A little over a year since the last “Scream,” 2022’s surprisingly satisfying sequel/reboot, the same cast (led by Jenna Ortega, Melissa Barrera, Jasmin Savoy Brown and Mason Gooding) and creative team (the filmmaking collective Radio Silence and writers James Vanderbilt and Guy Busick) have returned for another blood-splattered go-around. Except this time, they’ve left the idyllic confines of Woodsboro for the big city! That’s right, just like Jason before him, Ghostface is taking Manhattan! (The movie, of course, was actually filmed in Montreal.) New potential killers/victims include Dermot Mulroney, Henry Czerny, Samara Weaving and Tony Revolori, while Courtney Cox and, of all people, Hayden Penettiere make their franchise returns. (Neve Campbell and the producers had a very public dust-up regarding her compensation and she sadly won’t be back.) A change of scary scenery should be nice, although “Scream 3” relocating to Hollywood was pretty iffy. Pray that this Big Apple-set sequel doesn’t bite. – Drew Taylor


Columbia Pictures

March 10

Adam Driver plays a spaceman who winds up on earth 65 million years ago and is forced to battle terrifying dinosaurs using his newfangled technology. If you really need to know more than that (and, honestly, we’re shocked that you do), “65” comes from writer/directors Scott Beck and Bryan Woods, who came up with the original idea for “A Quiet Place,” and is produced by Sam Raimi, the master of modern horror (he also convinced his frequent collaborator Danny Elfman to do the score, which is very exciting). Considering how good Driver’s taste in projects is, “65” must be pretty special. That or he was just really excited about firing a giant gun at a T. Rex. Time to rewrite the history books! – Drew Taylor

John Wick Chapter 4

John Wick 4 First Look Photo

March 24

Yeah, we’re thinking he’s back. Keanu Reeves returns as the battle-hardened assassin in this, the fourth “John Wick” installment. Director Chad Stahelski returns, with a storyline focused on Wick taking down the High Table. No biggie! The production shot in New York City, Berlin, Paris and Osaka, with Laurence Fishburne, Ian McShane, Lane Riddick and Bridget Moynahan returning alongside new friends/foes Bill Skarsgård, Hiroyuki Sanada, Scott Adkins and Rina Sawayama. This is certainly the biggest “John Wick” entry yet and potentially the last mainline movie, as the franchise is beginning to spin-off into television (with the Mel Gibson-led period piece “The Continental”) and other films (Ana de Armas in “Ballerina”). If “John Wick: Chapter 4” is the last, hopefully it’s also the best. – Drew Taylor

Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves 

Paramount Pictures

March 31

Okay yes, a “Dungeons & Dragons” movie is a risky proposition, but how about one from the guys who made “Game Night,” one of the funniest comedies of the century? John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein are at the helm of this Paramount film, which also lets Chris Pine flex his incredible comedic muscles alongside Rege-Jean Page, Sophia Lillis and the one and only Hugh Grant. This one looks like it could be a barrel of fun. – Adam Chitwood


Nicolas Cage attends the 2022 Toronto International Film Festival premiere of ‘Butcher’s Crossing’ at Roy Thomson Hall on September 09, 2022 in Toronto, Ontario. (Emma McIntyre/Getty Images)

April 14

Nicolas Cage as Dracula. That’s it. That’s the pitch. Need we say more? OK if we must – this one also has a script by “Rick and Morty” regular Ryan Ridley, an ensemble cast that includes Nicholas Hoult, Awkwafina and Ben Schwartz, and a unique twist on a classic: Hoult plays the titular Renfield, assistant to DRacula, who leaves his job after falling in love. – Adam Chitwood

Evil Dead Rise

“Evil Dead Rise” (Warner Bros.)

April 21

The latest entry in the “Evil Dead” franchise is taking the “Poltergeist III” approach by setting the action in a Los Angeles apartment building. (It was actually shot in New Zealand.) Beth (Lily Sullivan) goes to visit her sister (Alyssa Sutherland), who is raising three kids in a cramped apartment. Once there, Beth discovers an ancient book in the bowels of the building. And wouldn’t you know it? It’s the Necronomicon! Expect lots of demons, monsters and hideous possessions. This entry is written and directed by Lee Cronin, the talented Irish filmmaker behind the insanely creepy A24 horror movie “The Hole in the Ground.” Bring it on. – Drew Taylor

Next Goal Wins

“Next Goal Wins” (Searchlight)

April 21

Thanks to the World Cup, football fanaticism is at an all-time high, making it the optimal time for “Next Goal Wins” to finally release. (Principal photography wrapped in January 2020.) Co-writer/director Taika Waititi champions another group of underdogs in this tale about the American Samoa football team – which in 2001 suffered the worst loss in FIFA history (31-0) – and their mission to redeem themselves at the 2014 World Cup. The team was profiled in a popular 2014 documentary, also called “Next Goal Wins.” Even if you’re not a fan of the beautiful game, there’s a lot to look forward to here. Dramatic heavyweights Michael Fassbender and Elisabeth Moss star. And if you’ve enjoyed Waititi’s other projects (“Jojo Rabbit,” “Thor: Ragnarok,” “What We Do in the Shadows”), expect the same quality from his new comedy-drama. Last but not least, soccer has given us some of film’s greatest sports comedies, from “Bend It Like Beckham” to “She’s The Man.” The genre is overdue for an update, and it looks like “Next Goal Wins” could kick off the next wave of greats. – Harper Lambert

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3

Marvel Studios

May 5

Before writer/director James Gunn focuses solely on his duties as DC Studios new co-CEO and chairman, he is going to blast off into the cosmos one last time with “Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 3.” Taking place immediately after the events of the cheery “Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special,” it follows the Guardians (among them: Chris Pratt, Dave Bautista, Karen Gillan, Pom Klementieff and Sean Gunn) as they search for new Gamora (Zoe Saldaña) and face off against a pair of new enemies: Adam Warlock (Will Poulter) and the High Evolutionary (Chukwudi Iwuji). Based on the trailer, it looks like it could be curtains for our favorite wise-cracking racoon Rocket (Bradley Cooper). But at least there is an adorable animal companion to fall back on, Maria Bakalova’s Cosmo the spacedog. Ready to say goodbye? – Drew Taylor

The Little Mermaid

"The Little Mermaid" (Disney)
“The Little Mermaid” (Disney)

May 26

While live action princess stories like “Cinderella,” “Beauty and the Beast” and “Aladdin” have gotten their time to shine, it’s finally time for “The Little Mermaid” to be part of that world. Staying true to its fairytale origins, the Disney flick follows Ariel, played by Halle Bailey of musical duo Chloe x Halle, who yearns for a life beyond the sea and is willing to make her dreams happen at any cost. Melissa McCarthy takes on the iconic role of Ursula while Javier Bardem plays King Triton alongside voice actors Daveed Diggs, Jacob Tremblay and Awkwafina who voice Sebastian, Flounder and Scuttle, respectively. Despite hearing only a snippet of Bailey’s Ariel gracefully singing “Part of Your World” during the teaser trailer, which was unveiled at D23 in Sept. 2022, we’re shored up that “The Little Mermaid” is ready to impress. – Loree Seitz

Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse

Across the Spider-Verse
Sony Pictures

June 2

With three different live action versions of Spider-Man not only out, but beloved by 2018, “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse” had an admittedly large hill in front of them – and Phil Lord and Chris Miller crushed it. The story of Miles Morales meeting multiversal variants of himself was lauded by fans and critics alike, not only for story, but for outright gorgeous animation and a killer soundtrack to boot. In “Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse,” Miles is going through the multiverse, and is set to meet countless more Spider-People – including Oscar Isaac as Spider-Man 2099 and Issa Rae as Jessica Drew, aka Spider-Woman. So at this point, the hype for the sequel is high, as fans expect the same level of excellence, with even more heavy hitters in the sandbox. – Andi Ortiz

The Flash

Warner Bros.

June 16

This one’s sure to be one of the most talked-about films of 2023, as many are curious to see how embattled star Ezra Miller handles the press tour. But “The Flash” does have the makings of an exciting and fresh entry in the DC universe – this long-in-the-works standalone pic finally comes to the screen courtesy of “It” filmmaker Andy Muschietti and finds Miller’s Barry Allen entering the multiverse, where he encounters alternate versions of himself as well as Michael Keaton’s Batman as he steps into Tim Burton’s world. How (or if) this fits into newly installed DC chiefs James Gunn and Peter Safran’s interconnected universe plans remains to be seen. – Adam Chitwood



June 16

Pixar’s latest animated wonder might be its Pixariest yet. Set in a bustling metropolis where the elements (wind, fire, water, earth) are personified, it follows a young fire girl named Ember (Leah Lewis) who falls in love with a water fellow named Wade (Mamoudou Athie). Will opposites attract? You betcha! Directed by Peter Sohn, a longtime Pixar heavyweight and director of “The Good Dinosaur,” the film is based on his experiences with his immigrant parents in the Bronx. So expect the same kind of fantastical/relatable storytelling that will make you gasp in awe (that first trailer is stunning) while also wiping away tears. You know, what we call “a Pixar special.” – Drew Taylor

Asteroid City

Wes Anderson, director of “Asteroid City” (Getty Images)

June 23

It’s a new Wes Anderson movie! Set in 1955 in a fictional American small town holding a Junior Stargazer competition, it’s probably exactly what you think it is – handsomely photographed (diagrammed?), funny in a lefthanded way (his frequent collaborator Roman Coppola co-wrote the screenplay) and twee-as-heck. The cast is starry (pun intended) even for a typical Anderson joint, with “Asteroid City” boasting a roster that includes Tom Hanks, Margot Robbie, Tilda Swinton, Scarlett Johansson, Bryan Cranston, Edward Norton and Adrien Brody. Sounds delightful! – Drew Taylor   

Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny

Phoebe Waller-Bridge and Harrison Ford in “Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny” (Lucasfilm/Disney)

June 30

Indiana Jones is back, and this time he’s firmly in the 1960s. The first “Indiana Jones” film not directed by Steven Spielberg and not based on an original idea by George Lucas finds James Mangold (“Logan,” “Ford v. Ferrari”) taking the helm, but it can’t possibly be any worse than “Kingdom of the Crystal Skull,” right? With Harrison Ford looking great and Phoebe Waller-Bridge and Mads Mikkelsen co-starring, this one certainly has all the pieces to be a satisfying send-off for one of the most iconic characters in cinema history. – Adam Chitwood

Mission: Impossible Dead Reckoning Part One

Paramount Pictures

July 14

Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to get unreasonably excited for the latest installment in the Tom Cruise-led “Mission: Impossible” franchise. In this, the seventh outing of super-spy Ethan Hunt (Cruise) and his crackerjack team of allies (Ving Rhames, Simon Pegg, Rebecca Ferguson, Vanessa Kirby), Hunt will confront the sins of his past (personified by Henry Czerny’s Kittridge returning) while facing down an all-new evil (led by Esai Morales and Pom Klementieff). While plot details are scarce, the killer teaser trailer has been running on every movie since “Top Gun: Maverick” and the new cast includes Cary Elwes, Shea Whigham, Hayley Atwell and “Maverick” standout Greg “Tarzan” Davis. Writer/director Christopher McQuarrie returns to coordinate the mayhem, alongside “Mission: Impossible – Fallout” veterans like editor Eddie Hamilton, composer Lorne Balfe and stunt coordinator Wade Eastwood. And as crazy as “Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning, Part One” is, just remember that we’ve got “Part Two” debuting around this time in 2024. This blurb will self-destruct in five seconds. – Drew Taylor


Warner Bros.

July 21

C’mon Barbie, let’s go party! Margot Robbie and Ryan Gosling play the tanned and toned Barbie and Ken of our dreams in Warner Bros. “Barbie.”  “Lady Bird” and “Little Women” filmmaker Greta Gerwig serves as director and co-wrote the script alongside Noah Baumbach. Though little is known about the plot, the teaser trailer hints at Barbie’s origin story before introducing the perfect — and pink — land of the Barbies, and might potentially feature musical numbers. The all-star ensemble cast includes America Ferrera, Will Ferrell, Simu Liu, Michael Cera, Kate McKinnon, Emma Mackey and Kingsley Ben-Adir, among others. – Loree Seitz


Universal Pictures

July 21

Each Christopher Nolan movie is an event, but we’re curious to see how the “Dunkirk” filmmaker turns the story of J. Robert Oppenheimer (played here by Cillian Murphy) and the creation of the first atomic bomb into what’s described as an “epic thriller.” The first teaser was mighty intense, and he’s got a stacked ensemble (Matt Damon, Emily Blunt and Robert Downey Jr. co-star) and some IMAX photography (natch). What does an epic biopic look like? I suppose we’re going to find out. – Adam Chitwood

The Marvels 

Marvel Studios

July 28

The follow-up to 2019’s “Captain Marvel” is not going the traditional sequel route. Instead of merely continuing the adventures of Brie Larson’s Carol Danvers, “The Marvels” teams her up with two other exciting new MCU characters: Ms. Marvel (Iman Vellani) and Monica Rambeau (Teyonah Parris). On top of that, Nia DaCosta is at the helm, which is all to say we don’t know what “The Marvels” will be exactly, but it sure sounds like something refreshing or new. If the post-credits scene from the “Ms. Marvel” finale is any indication, we’re in for something of a body-swapping scenario that brings Danvers back to Earth and transports the young Kamala Khan to the stars. – Adam Chitwood

Haunted Mansion 

Tiffany Haddish Haunted Mansion
Tiffany Haddish stars in “Haunted Mansion” (Disney)

Aug. 11

The famous Disneyland attraction, which opened way back in 1969, is finally getting a new adaptation. Sadly, it won’t be the Guillermo del Toro-led version which was initially announced in 2010. Instead, this new take on the 999 happy haunts comes from “Dear While People” filmmaker Justin Simien and Kate Dippold, who is as famous for writing the 2016 “Ghostbusters” movie as she is for showing up to a party dressed as the Babadook (look it up). This new “Haunted Mansion” follows a single mom (Disney favorite Rosario Dawson) as she attempts to rid her New Orleans home of poltergeists, enlisting the help of several paranormal researchers of different styles (among them: Lakeith Stanfield, Owen Wilson, Tiffany Haddish and Danny DeVito). The footage screened at last year’s D23 Expo was surprisingly entertaining, with Jamie Lee Curtis announced as playing Madame Leota (the woman in the floating crystal ball) and Jared Leto as the iconic Hatbox Ghost. (Winona Ryder also appears in an unspecified role.) Also fans of the Haunted Mansion will be pleased to know there’s not a single mansion in this movie but rather two. Boo! – Drew Taylor


Zendaya (Getty Images)
Zendaya (Getty Images)

Aug. 11

Because of course the great Luca Guadagnino would follow-up his pitch black cannibal road movie with an effervescent romantic sports comedy starring Zendaya! He’s slippery like that! The official logline for “Challengers” is as simple as it is intriguing: “The wife and coach of a famed tennis player in the middle of a losing streak signs him up for a Challenger event, where they discover he will compete against his wife’s former lover” (Mike Faist and Josh O’Connor co-star). Behind the scenes Guadagnino reunites with cinematographer Sayombhu Mukdeeprom, who shot “Call Me By Your Name” and “Suspiria,” and composers Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross, who just worked with him on “Bones and All.” We’d follow Luca anywhere. Even to the tennis courts. – Drew Taylor

Blue Beetle

Blue Beetle
DC Entertainment

Aug. 18

DC may be in for a reset, but if there’s one 2023 franchise that has the potential to continue on under James Gunn and Peter Safran’s tutelage, it’s “Blue Beetle.” Originally intended for an HBO Max release, this Latino-led superhero pic is heading to the big screen in August. With a largely Latino cast and a brand new character for the DCU, this could be a breakout hit in the making. – Adam Chitwood

Untitled Please Don’t Destroy Film


Aug. 18

Time to see if “SNL”s favorite nepo babies are worth their salt on the silver screen! “Please Don’t Destroy,” the comedy trio consisting of Martin Herlihy, John Higgins and Ben Marshall, has been turning out some of the show’s most consistently funny sketches since they joined in 2021. (Their quarantine TikToks were also top-notch.) The boys will get a chance to showcase their skills in an untitled adventure-comedy they’re writing and starring in for Judd Apatow and Universal. In it, they play three friends who seek to turn their lives around by finding gold buried in a nearby mountain. Standouts from the ensemble cast include “SNL” star Bowen Yang, Conan O’Brien, and “Hacks” breakout Megan Stalter. If all goes well, the film could be the buddy comedy of Summer 2023. – Harper Lambert

True Love

Getty Images

Oct. 6

It’s been seven years since Gareth Edwards made “Rogue One,” but he’s finally back with a new feature – an original this time – this October with “True Love.” The secretive 20th Century Studios project has sci-fi elements and a cast that includes John David Washington, Gemma Chan, Allison Janney, Ralph Ineson and Alison Janney, and Edwards reunites with cinematographer Greig Fraser. That’s about all we know right now, but it’s enough to have us intrigued and excited. – Adam Chitwood

The Exorcist

Linda Blair in “The Exorcist” (Warner Bros.)

Oct. 13

Director David Gordon Green just wrapped up his “Halloween” trilogy with “Halloween Ends” and now he’s going to jump into another horror remake with the still untitled “Exorcist” film. Described as a direct sequel to William Friedkin’s original masterpiece, it follows a father of a possessed child who seeks out a woman who knows a thing or two about the experience – Ellen Burstyn’s character from the original film, Chris MacNeil. Many of Green’s collaborators on the new “Halloween” trilogy return for this “Exorcist” outing (the first of three planned films), including producer Jason Blum, writers Scott Teems and Danny McBride and cinematographer Michael Simmonds. Following up what many consider to be the scariest movie ever is a daunting proposition, but DGG seems like a genuinely fearless director. – Drew Taylor

Dune Part Two

Warner Bros.

Nov. 3

After “Dune” stunned sci-fi fanatics and newbies alike, the sequel to the sci-fi epic will stay true to the adaptation of Frank Herbert’s acclaimed bestseller while giving the fans what they want: more Zendaya. After teasing a larger role for Zendaya’s Fremen warrior Chani — and a rival — Paul (Timothée Chalamet), who a warpath of revenge against the conspirators who destroyed his family, will deepen his relationship with Chani and face insurmountable obstacles that force him to reassess his priorities. The film’s cast has also expanded to include Austin Butler, who will play Feyd Rautha, Christopher Walken, who will play the Emperor, Florence Pugh, Léa Seydoux and Souheila Yacoub. – Loree Seitz

The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes

Rachel Zegler as Lucy Gray Baird and Tom Blyth as Coriolanus Snow in The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes. Photo Credit: Murray Close

Nov. 17

Just like we returned to Pandora this year after a 13-year wait, we will be returning to Panem next year after an 11-year wait, but this time for a prequel. If you didn’t read Suzanne Collins’ beloved young adult trilogy, not to worry because “The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes” takes place years before Katniss and Peeta’s time in the Capitol, allll the way back to only the tenth Hunger Games. Eighteen year-old Coriolanus Snow anticipates the opportunity to be mentor in the games. His mentee, though, comes from the lowly District 12, where they don’t have as many resources to train tributes. If you’re still not convinced by the story, the cast should do it. Rachel Zegler will star as Lucy Gray Baird, Hunter Schafer as Tigris Snow, Tom Blyth as Coriolanus Snow, Viola Davis as Dr. Volumnia Gaul and Peter Dinklage as Casca Highbottom, among others. Francis Lawrence, who directed “Catching Fire” and both “Mockingjay” films, returns to direct. *Conducts three-finger salute*: May the odds be ever in your favor! – Dessi Gomez


Getty Images/Disney

Nov. 22

2023 is Walt Disney Studios’ 100th year. And of course Walt Disney Animation Studios, the crown jewel of its entire sprawling media empire, is going to do something to celebrate. “Wish” is that celebration, the origin story of the wishing star, which has been seen in countless Disney animated projects. So far the only description of the film came courtesy of 2022’s D23 Expo, where directors Chris Buck and Fawn Veerasunthorn were on hand to discuss the upcoming project alongside co-writer (and head of WDAS) Jennifer Lee. Ariana DeBose stars as a 17-year-old girl in the Kingdom of Wishes who makes a plea to the heavens and is saddled with the wishing star, who in the film is a fully anthropomorphic (but non-verbal) character. Together they go on a quest to stop a growing evil in the kingdom. Julia Michael is writing the songs for the new musical and at D23 DeBose performed one of them (“More for Us”) that brought the house down. Perhaps most excitingly is the fact that the film will utilize a unique visual aesthetic, combining 3D computer animation with watercolor-ish brushstrokes. Considering they’ve been attempting to create a feature-length film in this style since “Tangled,” there must have been some considerable breakthroughs. In other words: their wish was granted. – Drew Taylor


Warner Bros.

Dec. 15

Yes, Timothee Chalamet playing Willy Wonka is definitely something we want to see, but the biggest selling point of “Wonka” is director Paul King. He famously steered the first two “Paddington” movies to critical acclaim, and we’re mighty curious to see what he does with an even bigger canvas. At least we already know he can nail a musical sequence. – Adam Chitwood

Untitled Ghostbusters: Afterlife Sequel

Ghostbusters Afterlife Gil Kenan
Columbia Pictures

Dec. 20

After many delays, 2021 saw the release of “Ghostbusters: Afterlife,” a charming and unexpectedly heartfelt return to “Ghostbusters” territory after 2016’s divisive, female-led remake. Grossing more than $200 million, this new entry was a modest hit and a sequel and several spin-off projects were quickly put into development. This untitled follow-up comes from writers Jason Reitman and Gil Kenan, with Kenan taking over directorial duties from Reitman (who remains as a producer) and “Afterlife” stars Paul Rudd, Finn Wolfhard, Mckenna Grace and Carrie Coon also expected to return. Considering the first movie’s mid-credits scene and the sequel’s codename (“Firehouse”), it’s expected that the sequel will be set, once again, in Manhattan. (They are, of course, filming in London.) We ain’t ‘fraid of no ghosts. In fact, we’re very excited. – Drew Taylor

Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom

Warner Bros.

Dec. 25

The man who put a drumming octopus into a superhero movie is back with “Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom,” the sequel to the $1 billion grossing DC standalone pic starring Jason Momoa. Indeed, filmmaker James Wan is reason enough to be excited about this one, as the “Conjuring” and “Furious 7” director has no qualms about bringing all kinds of genre flourishes to the world of “Aquaman.” It helps when you have someone as charismatic as Momoa in the lead role, and Patrick Wilson returns for “Aquaman 2” as half-brother Orm as does Yahya Abdul-Mateen II as Black Manta. Not much else is known about this one at this point in time, but to that I reiterate: James Wan put a drumming octopus in the first “Aquaman.” All bets are off in the best way. – Adam Chitwood

The Killer

David Fincher at The Paley Center For Media's 2019 PaleyFest Fall TV Previews in Beverly Hills
David Livingston/Getty Images

Release Date TBA

David Fincher is one of our greatest living directors, so there mere notion of him making an assassin thriller starring Michael Fassbender, with a screenplay by his “Seven” scribe Andrew Kevin Walker, has us on edge. Based on the Alexis Nolent graphic novel of the same name, “The Killer” finds Fassbender in international assassin mode alongside Tilda Swinton. That’s about all we know about this one at this point (Fincher is keeping things close to the chest), but we’re holding out hope this Netflix release gets some kind of theatrical exhibition like Fincher’s last Netflix feature, “Mank.” – Adam Chitwood

Beau Is Afraid

Joaquin Phoenix and Ari Aster (Getty Images)

Release Date TBA

With “Hereditary” (2018) and “Midsommar” (2019), horror maestro Ari Aster is 2 for 2 — will he be able to pull off a hat trick? We’ll find out next year, when his third A24 feature hits the big screen. Starring Joaquin Phoenix, “Beau Is Afraid” is being touted as “an intimate, decades-spanning portrait of one of the most successful entrepreneurs of all time.” Little else is known about the project, save for some haunting images of the “Joker” star wandering the set in satin pajamas. He’ll be joined by an ensemble cast of legendary character actors (and a few A24 alum) including Patti LuPone, Amy Ryan, Parker Posey, Stephen McKinley Henderson and Richard Kind. If Toni Collette and Florence Pugh’s performances in Aster’s first two flicks are any indication, “Beau” could be another career highlight for a star who specializes in playing deranged individuals. Let the creepfest begin! -Harper Lambert


Bradley Cooper in "Maestro" (Netflix)
Bradley Cooper in “Maestro” (Netflix)

Release Date TBA

Leonard Bernstein — famous conductor-composer and fictional mentor to Lydia Tár – is getting his flowers in the aptly titled “Maestro.” Bradley Cooper will star in, direct, and co-write, as well as produce alongside heavy-hitting producers Steven Spielberg, Martin Scorsese and Todd Phillips. (Spielberg was originally attached to direct, but handed the reins to Cooper after seeing an early cut of “A Star Is Born.”) The Netflix biographical drama is said to focus on Bernstein’s lengthy marriage to Felicia Montealegre, played by Carey Mulligan. Between the stacked cast (see also: Matt Bomer, Sarah Silverman, Maya Hawke) and the success of Cooper’s last directorial effort, “Maestro” is guaranteed to draw a crowd. (Plus, there’s the fun of debating how well Cooper bears his character’s likeness — how ‘bout that prosthetic nose?) – Harper Lambert

Killers of the Flower Moon

Apple TV+

Release Date TBA

The Leonardo DiCaprio/Martin Scorsese collaboration continues! Their latest is an adaptation of the bestselling, utterly chilling nonfiction book by New Yorker science writer David Grann about the 1920s murders of indigenous peoples in an effort to secure oil land. The story has many twists and turns and is lodged in a fascinating temporal nexus –  overseen by a young J. Edgar Hoover (back before he was totally corrupt) and prosecuted by an agent and former Texas Ranger seen as an old school lawman. The production took something of a U-turn when DiCaprio, originally intended to play the lawman, decided that he would rather play one of the scheming villains (Jesse Plemons stepped in to take the role originally earmarked for DiCaprio and wound up leaving “Nope” as a result – he was supposed to be the Steven Yeun character). Robert De Niro, Brendan Fraser, John Lithgow, Lily Gladstone and Sturgill Simpson co-star, working from a script by Scorsese and Eric Roth. Look for this to be one of Apple’s big award plays come the end of the year. – Drew Taylor

Rebel Moon

zack snyder batman
Zack Snyder (Getty Images)

His intense fans aside, Zack Snyder makes cool-looking movies, and “Rebel Moon” has a fascinating backstory. This sci-fi epic began life as a “Star Wars” movie that Snyder was developing to direct that was inspired by “Seven Samurai.” When that film never happened, he kind of repurposed that idea – about a colony on the edge of the galaxy under threat – for this new Netflix movie. Sofia Boutella stars as a woman sent to neighboring colonies to round up allies to fight back, and the ensemble cast includes Charlie Hunnam, Michiel Huisman, Djimon Hounsou, Doona Bae, Jena Malone and Anthony Hopkins. – Adam Chitwood

Leave the World Behind 

NEW YORK, NEW YORK – APRIL 18: Julia Roberts attends the GASLIT World Premiere on April 18, 2022 in New York City. (Photo by Theo Wargo/Getty Images for STARZ)

Release Date TBA

“Mr. Robot” and “Homecoming” filmmaker Sam Esmail made a habit out of crafting standout episodes of television, and he’s assembled an all-star cast for his Netflix feature “Leave the World Behind.” Based on the book by Rumaan Alam, the story follows a family on vacation in Long Island when a blackout occurs. Approached by two strangers, both families but learn how to navigate a potentially crumbling world. Julia Roberts, Mahershala Ali, Ethan Hawke and Kevin Bacon lead the cast. – Adam Chitwood