One of the industries that have suffered the most as a result of the pandemic is the film industry. The outbreak has caused cinemas and movie theatres around the world to be closed down, which in turn has caused the worldwide box office to lose billions of dollars. Film productions have been halted ‘til the foreseeable future and upcoming films originally scheduled to be released between March and November have been moved to future dates or delayed.
This has caused people to resort to streaming services such as Netflix and Disney+ as their go-to platform for movies. Several films have even been released straight to these streaming services after originally set for theatre releases. The effects of the pandemic in the film industry have also resulted in the resurgence of the drive-in theatre concept around the world as a way for people to enjoy movies whilst still implementing social distancing.
With cinemas and movie theatres beginning to reopen in June-July, now is the perfect time to get caught up with some of the biggest films coming to theatres in the coming months.
This week, we share with you a list of upcoming blockbusters to look forward to:
One of the first major films to be released when theatres start to reopen again is Mulan, an action drama film set to be released on July 24, 2020. Directed by Niki Caro, the film is a live-action adaptation of Disney’s 1998 animated classic that is based on the Chinese folklore “The Ballad of Mulan”. It will be the second Disney film with a female director at the helm and a budget over $100 million after Ava DuVernay’s A Wrinkle in Time. The film features Chinese-American actress, Liu Yifei, in the titular role of Mulan, along with an ensemble of prolific Asian actors including Donnie Yen, Gong Li, and Jet Li.
The plot tells the story of Hua Mulan (Liu Yifei), the eldest daughter of a respected warrior, who joins the Imperial Army in place of her ill father following a royal decree issued by the Emperor of China (Jet Li), which states that one man per family must enlist in the Imperial Army to protect the country from Northern invaders. Masquerading as a man, Hua Jun, every inch of her strength and will is tested as she learns to fully harness her inner-strength and embrace her maximum potential. This epic journey will shape Mulan into a noble warrior and gain the respect of a grateful nation and a proud father.
Mulan looks to be yet another great Disney live-action adaptation that features an amazing cast, thrilling action scenes, beautiful cinematography, stunning production and costume design, clearly evident in the latest trailer.
Release date: July 24, 2020
Starring: Liu Yifei, Donnie Yen, Jason Scott Lee, Yoson An, Gong Li, Jet Li, Tzi Ma, Rosalind Chao, Ron Yuan, Jimmy Wong, Doua Moua, Chen Tang, Nelson Lee, Cheng Pei-pei, Utkarsh Ambudkar, Chum Ehelepola and Arka Das.
Directed by: Niki Caro
Screenplay by: Rick Jaffa, Amanda Silver, Lauren Hynek & Elizabeth Martin
Based on: Disney’s Mulan by Tony Bancroft & Barry Cook | Ballad of Mulan by Gui Maoqian
Set to be released on July 31, 2020, Tenet is an upcoming spy film written and directed by British-American filmmaker, Christopher Nolan. Originally scheduled to be released on July 14, 2020, Tenet will be Nolan’s eleventh feature film, following 2017’s Dunkirk. The film features John David Washington, son of Denzel Washington, in the lead role of the Protagonist, alongside A-List Hollywood actors including Robert Pattinson, Michael Caine, Elizabeth Debicki, Aaron Taylor-Johnson and Kenneth Branagh.
The plot follows the character simply called the Protagonist as he fights for the survival of the entire world, armed with only one word, “Tenet”. The Protagonist must venture through the dark world of international espionage on a quest that will unravel in something beyond real-time.
Christopher Nolan hasn’t disappointed us with his creations thus far, and although this film, in typical Nolan fashion, is shrouded in total mystery, there’s no doubt that Tenet will be another successful Nolan project judging from what we’ve seen so far in the trailers.
Release date: July 31, 2020
Starring: John David Washington, Robert Pattinson, Elizabeth Debicki, Dimple Kapadia, Michael Caine, Kenneth Branagh, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Clémence Poésy, Himesh Patel, Denzil Smith, Martin Donovan and Sean Avery.
Directed by: Christopher Nolan
Written by: Christopher Nolan
Set to be released on September 4, 2020, A Quiet Place Part II is a horror film written and directed by John Krasinski. Following the critical acclaim and box office success of 2018’s A Quiet Place, a sequel was soon announced, with Krasinski returning to write and direct. Emily Blunt, Millicent Simmonds and Noah Jupe return as their respective characters from the first film, with Cillian Murphy and Djimon Hounsou joining the cast.
Following the horrifying events of the first film, the Abbott family must continue their fight for survival in silence as they endure the horrors of the outside world. They soon realise that there are other threats that lurk past the sand path aside from the creatures that hunt by sound when they are forced to travel into the unknown.
What made the first film successful was the Krasinski’s impeccable direction and the use of sound to not only drive the narrative but also produce genuine heart-pounding scares, and from what we’ve seen so far in the trailers, the sequel will continue expand and utilise the tools that made the predecessor so successful.
Release date: September 4, 2020
Starring: Emily Blunt, Cillian Murphy, Millicent Simmonds, Noah Jupe, Djimon Hounsou and John Krasinski.
Directed by: John Krasinski
Written by: John Krasinski
Based on: Characters created by Bryan Woods & Scott Beck
Runtime: 97 minutes
Set to be released on September 11, 2020, The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It is a supernatural horror film with Michael Chaves taking over directing duty from James Wan, who directed 2013’s The Conjuring and 2016’s The Conjuring 2. Serving as the eighth instalment in The Conjuring Universe franchise, the film will see the return of Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga in the roles of paranormal investigators and authors, Ed and Lorraine Warren.
The story is taken from one of the most mind-blowing cases from the Warrens’ files, it is based on the Trial of Arne Cheyenne Johnson, notoriously known as the “Devil Made Me Do It” case. A hair-raising story of terror, murder and unknown evil that stunned even the two seasoned paranormal investigators. It begins with the fight for the soul of a young boy, then takes them farther than anything they’d ever encountered before, which includes the first time in U.S. history that demonic possession was used as a defence by a murder suspect.
Release date: September 11, 2020
Starring: Vera Farmiga, Patrick Wilson, Ruairi O’Connor, Sarah Catherine Hook, Julian Hilliard, Charlene Amoia, Paul Wilson, Sterling Jerins, Shannon Kook, Steve Coulter, Ronnie Gene Blevins and Ingrid Bisu.
Directed by: Michael Chaves
Screenplay by: David Leslie Johnson-McGoldrick
Story by: David Leslie Johnson-McGoldrick & James Wan
Set to be released on September 18, 2020, The King’s Man is a period action spy film directed and co-written by Matthew Vaughn. The film serves as a prequel to the previous two Kingsman film series, 2014’s Kingsman: The Secret Service and 2017’s Kingsman: The Golden Circle, both directed by Vaughn. Led by Ralph Fiennes in the role of Duke of Oxford, the film features an ensemble cast that includes Harris Dickinson, Gemma Arterton, Rhys Ifans, Matthew Goode, Charles Dance, Tom Hollander, Daniel Brühl, and more.
The plot follows the story of Duke of Oxford (Fiennes) and his protégé (Dickinson) in a race against time to stop the evils plans of a group of the worst tyrants and criminal masterminds in history who gather to plot a war to wipe out millions.
The King’s Man looks to be another great instalment in the Kingsman film series filled with the same, if not cooler, action sequences, direction, humour, and high production values that made the previous two instalments a huge success.
Release date: September 18, 2020
Starring: Ralph Fiennes, Harris Dickinson, Gemma Arterton, Rhys Ifans, Matthew Goode, Joel Basman, Tom Hollander, Daniel Brühl, Djimon Hounsou, Charles Dance, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Stanley Tucci, Alison Steadman, Robert Aramayo and Alexandra Maria Lara.
Directed by: Matthew Vaughn
Screenplay by: Matthew Vaughn & Karl Gajdusek
Story by: Matthew Vaughn
Based on: The Secret service by Mark Millar & Dave Gibbons
Set to be released on October 2, 2020, Wonder Woman 1984 is a superhero film directed by Patty Jenkins with a script co-written by Jenkins, Geoff Johns and David Callaham. Based on the DC Comics character Wonder Woman, the film is the sequel to 2017’s Wonder Woman and the ninth instalment in the DC Extended Universe. The film sees the return of Gal Gadot in the titular role of Diana Prince/Wonder Woman, along with Chris Pine, Connie Nielsen and Robin Wright, with Kristen Wiig and Pedro Pascal joining the cast.
As the title suggests, the sequel takes us to 1984, during the Cold War, where Diana Prince (Gadot) faces off against two powerful enemies – media tycoon Maxwell Lord (Pascal) and her friend-turned-foe Barbara Ann Minerva (Wiig) AKA Cheetah – while she also reunites with her love interest, Steve Trevor (Pine), who was presumed dead in the previous film.
Judging from the awesome 80s synthpop music used in the trailers, Wonder Woman 1984 has amazing production values that perfectly captures the essence of the 80s, from the production design to the costume design. It seems like they’ve stepped up their game in the visual effects department because the visuals look pretty darn awesome so far. The action sequences look so bad-ass, especially that of Wonder Woman using her lasso to swing on lightning.
Release date: October 2, 2020
Starring: Gal Gadot, Chris Pine, Kristen Wiig, Pedro Pascal, Robin Wright and Connie Nielsen.
Directed by: Patty Jenkins
Screenplay by: Patty Jenkins, Geoff Johns & David Callaham
Story by: Patty Jenkins & Geoff Johns
Based on: Wonder Woman by William Moulton Marston
Set to be released on October 16, 2020, The French Dispatch is a comedy-drama film written and directed by Wes Anderson. It is Anderson’s tenth feature film and features a story written with his frequent collaborators, Roman Coppola, Hugo Guinness and Jason Schwartzman. The film features an ensemble of the biggest Hollywood actors including Adrien Brodie, Frances McDormand, Tilda Swinton, Timothée Chalamet, Saoirse Ronan and many, many more.
The film focuses on three storylines, described as “a love letter to journalists set at an outpost of an American newspaper in a fictional 20th-century French city”. Set in the fictional French city of Ennui-sur-Blasé, the story brings to life a collection of stories published in the eponymous The French Dispatch newspaper.
As with all of Anderson’s films, The French Dispatch features an impressive ensemble of actors, quirky characters, a unique story, distinctively eye-catching cinematography and production design that will undoubtedly make it another quintessential Wes Anderson production.
Release date: October 16, 2020
Starring: Benicio del Toro, Adrien Brody, Tilda Swinton, Léa Seydoux, Frances McDormand, Timothée Chalamet, Lyna Khoudri, Jeffrey Wright, Mathieu Amalric, Stephen Park, Bill Murray, Owen Wilson, Liev Schreiber, Elisabeth Moss, Edward Norton, Willem Dafoe, Lois Smith, Saoirse Ronan, Christoph Waltz, Cécile de France, Guillaume Gallienne, Jason Schwartzman, Tony Revolori, Rupert Friend, Henry Winkler, Bob Balaban, Hippolyte Girardot and Anjelica Huston.
Directed by: Wes Anderson
Screenplay by: Wes Anderson
Story by: Wes Anderson, Roman Coppola, Hugo Guinness & Jason Schwartzman
Runtime: 103 minutes
Set to be released on November 6, 2020, Black Widow is a superhero film directed by Cate Shortland, with a script written by Eric Pearson from a story by Jac Schaeffer and Ned Benson. Based on the Marvel Comics character of the same name, Black Widow will be the 24th film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Scarlett Johansson returns as Natasha Romanoff, this time in the lead role of the first Black Widow solo film, a character she’s played for a decade.
Set after the events of 2016’s Captain America: Civil War, Black Widow finds Natasha Romanoff alone and on the run. When she encounters a threatening conspiracy with connections to her past, Natasha is pursued by a relentless foe that will stop at nothing. Natasha is forced to deal with her background as a spy and the dysfunctional relationships left in her wake long before she became an Avenger.
It’s been a long time coming but it’s great that Black Widow finally gets her own solo film (SPOILER ALERT!) even though she ultimately met her demise in Avengers: Endgame. It will be interesting to see her background and history before joining the Avengers, as it’s only been touched slightly in previous films. The film’s villain, the Taskmaster, seems like a formidable adversary for Natasha to go up against, and the action sequences look exquisitely choreographed.
Release date: November 6, 2020
Starring: Scarlett Johansson, Florence Pugh, David Harbour, O-T Fagbenle, William Hurt, Ray Winstone, Rachel Weisz.
Directed by: Cate Shortland
Screenplay by: Eric Pearson
Story by: Jac Schaeffer & Ned Benson
Based on: Black Widow by Stan Lee, Don Rico & Don Heck
Set to be released on November 25, 2020, No Time to Die is a British spy film directed by Cary Joji Fukunaga. The twenty-fifth instalment in the James Bond film series, No Time to Die sees the return of Daniel Craig as the fictional MI6 agent James Bond in his fifth and final outing. The film will also see the returns of Léa Seydoux, Ben Whishaw, Naomie Harris, Jeffrey Wright, Christoph Waltz and Ralph Fiennes, while Rami Malek, Lashana Lynch and Ana de Armas joins the cast.
Following the capture of Ernes Stavro Blofeld (Waltz) in Spectre, No Time to Die is set five years later. James Bond has left active service. Bond is approached by his friend and CIA officer, Felix Leiter (Wright), who needs his help in finding a missing scientist, Valdo Obruchev (Dencik). When it becomes clear that Obruchev was abducted, Bond must come face-to-face with danger the likes of which the world has never seen before.
Daniel Craig’s final outing as James Bond is surely an event not to be missed in what looks to be an action-packed spectacle featuring an ensemble of great actors.
Release date: November 25, 2020
Starring: Daniel Craig, Rami Malek, Léa Seydoux, Lashana Lynch, Ben Whishaw, Naomie Harris, Jeffrey Wright, Christoph Waltz, Ralph Fiennes, Ana de Armas, Rory Kinnear, Dali Benssalah, David Dencik and Billy Magnussen.
Directed by: Cary Joji Fukunaga
Screenplay by: Neal Purvis, Robert Wade, Cary Joji Fukunaga & Phoebe Waller-Bridge
Story by: Neal Purvis, Robert Wade & Cary Joji Fukunaga
Based on: James Bond by Ian Fleming
Set to be released on December 18, 2020, Dune is an epic science fiction film directed by Denis Villeneuve. Based on the 1965 novel of the same name by Frank Herbert, it is the second theatrical adaptation following David Lynch’s 1984 adaptation. Dune will be the first of a planned two-part adaptation that will cover roughly the first half of the book. The film stars an ensemble cast of Hollywood’s most prominent actors led by Timothée Chalamet in the lead role of Paul Atreides.
Set in a dystopian future, Duke Leto (Isaac) is rewarded stewardship of the dangerous desert planet Arrakis AKA Dune, home to the only source of “the spice”, the most valuable substance in the world that can extend human life, grants superhuman levels of thought, and makes foldspace travel possible. Leto brings with him Lady Jessica (Ferguson), his Bene Gesserit concubine, his son and heir Paul (Chalamet), as well as his most trusted confidants to Arrakis, even though Leto knows his stewardship opportunity is a devious trap set by his foes.
Although a trailer has yet been released, several official photos from the film have hinted at the high-calibre actors featured in the film as well as the high production value and cinematography. After David Lynch’s disappointing adaptation more than 30 years ago, it is the perfect time for a new adaptation of this acclaimed novel and who better to take the reins than Dennis Villeneuve. His recent works on 2016’s Arrival and 2017’s Blade Runner 2049 has proven Villeneuve to be a proficient sci-fi director and a force to be reckoned with.
Release date: December 18, 2020
Starring: Timothée Chalamet, Rebecca Ferguson, Oscar Isaac, Josh Brolin, Stellan Skarsgård, Dave Bautista, Stephen McKinley, Zendaya, David Dastmalchian, Chang Chen, Sharon Duncan-Brewster, Charlotte Rampling, Jason Momoa and Javier Bardem.
Directed by: Dennis Villeneuve
Screenplay by: Jon Spaihts, Eric Roth & Denis Villeneuve
Based on: Dune by Frank Herbert