If we take into consideration the extensive list of blockbuster film releases last year, we think it's safe to say that 2017 was most definitely a year for cinephiles. Majority of the releases were just as successful as we'd predicted, although that's a lot more than can be said for 2016 where there were significantly more disappointments than breakthroughs on the big screen.
Superhero fans couldn't have been more fortunate last year with the release of six new films. Marvel brought forth 'Guardians of the Galaxy Vol.2', 'Spider-Man: Homecoming' and 'Thor: Ragnorak', the later which has been labelled the funniest Marvel film of all time. DC/Warner on the other hand, got the ball rolling with the brilliant 'Wonder Woman' and just about managed to rouse a similar response for 'Justice League'. Fox released 'Logan' quite early on last year which told a darker story of the 'X-Men' character. The film was dubbed one of the best productions of the year. Superheroes aside, 'Moonlight', 'La La Land', 'Blade Runner 2049', the shocking 'Get Out', the recently released, 'Star Wars: The Last Jedi' and the long awaited 'Beauty & the Beast' all triumphed.
2018 clearly has a lot to live up to. Here's a list of the most anticipated releases this year.
'Avengers: Infinity War' - 27th April 2018
Not only is 'Avengers: Infinity War' set to be the biggest cinematic event of the year, but it also promises to be the best superhero film yet. The film will supposedly feature up to 40 secondary Marvel characters and we might even be treated to the odd superhero cameo if we're lucky. If that's not enough to entice you, give the trailer a go, it's already become the most watched in history!
'Deadpool 2' - 1st June 2018
Back in 2016 when 'Deadpool' made its debut, it quickly became one of the highest grossing superhero films of all time. Josh Brolin joins the cast in 'Deadpool 2' as Cable promising even more jokes, blood and fun! There were concerns over the films BBFC classification of 15 when Disney bought out Fox, but they seem to have been quashed following Disney's assurance that they weren't interested in changing the franchise in anyway. The sequel is directed by David Leitch in place of Tim Miller who left the film after creative differences with protagonist Ryan Reynolds.
'Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald' - 16th November 2018
The 2015 success 'Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them', transported us back into the magical world of 'Harry Potter' in a move that clearly sat well with Potterheads. The first instalment marked the beginning of a saga which aims to last at least five films. Jude Law is to make his debut as a young Albus Dumbledore in 'Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald', which is by far one of the most anticipated appearances. There has been a slight controversy over Johnny Depp's participation in the film following claims from his ex-wife, Amber Heard, that he was both physically and verbally abusive towards her during their marriage.
'The Incredibles 2' - 13th July 2018
'The Incredibles' continues to be a much loved treasure among fans and it's not surprise when the film contains some of the best work from Pixar Studios. The announcement of a sequel was a huge deal for fans everywhere making 'The Incredibles 2' without doubt one of the most anticipated films of 2018. From a quick glance at the teaser, it appears as though Jack-Jack the youngest member of the family, will be featuring heavily in the sequel.
'Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom' - 8th June 2018
2015 brought us the reboot of Steven Spielberg's trilogy that terrorised audiences back in the 90s. 'Jurassic World' was directed by Colin Trevorrow and starred Chris Pratt alongside Bryce Dallas Howard. It goes without saying that the film was a huge success worldwide. The sequel, 'Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom' has been directed by Juan Antonio Bayona who promises a much scarier and darker film.
'Solo: A Star Wars Story' - 25th May 2018
Given the recent release of 'Star Wars: The Last Jedi' it's no surprise that there's no principal 'Star Wars' film out this year. Fear not however, for a spin-off is coming our way, 'Solo: A Star Wars Story' will focus on Han Solo in his youth, and how he came to be the way he is. 'Solo' will take place long before the character met the likes of Luke and Obi-Wan. Alden Ehrenreich will play Han Solo. The film has had its fair share of setbacks but 'Rogue One', another 'Star Wars' spin-off, also encountered problems initially before becoming the box-office success that it was.
'Tomb Raider' - 16th March 2018
2001 brought us 'Lara Croft: Tomb Raider', the first film adaptation of the video game character. Back then Angelina Jolie played Croft, and went on to do so for a second film. Neither production succeeded in pulling in mass audiences and so now this year the franchise has been given a new face. Alicia Vikander plays a more inexperienced Lara Croft in the new 'Tomb Raider' and the trailers suggest it could be a be a big action-adventure hit this year!
'Ready Player One' - 30th March 2018
'Ready Player One', based on the book by Ernest Cline and directed by Steven Spielberg, tells an original science fiction story. Set in a future where a virtual reality video game is the favoured escape from life amongst the majority of the global population, we're introduced to Tye Sheridan's character who's joined alongside cast mates Olivia Cooke, Simon Pegg & Mark Rylance.
'Black Panther' - 12th February 2018
With the announcement of 'Avengers: Infinity war', it appears as though the rest of Marvel's releases this year have faded into the background. Before the latest Avengers instalment hits cinemas however, we'll get to see 'Black Panther'. The superhero was first introduced in 'Captain America: Civil War', and since his appearance in that production, we've been sat patiently wondering when we'd get to see him in action again. Marvel have announced that this production will be a lot more grown up and serious than those we're used to, and we can't wait.
'Ocean's Eight' - 22nd June 2018
After a trilogy of films featuring some of the biggest male stars in Hollywood (George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Matt Damon & Andy Garcia), this time, the women take over. Sandra Bullock, Helena Bonham Carter, Cate Blanchett, Anne Hathaway, Sarah Paulson, Mindy Kaling, Rihanna and Awkwafina all star in the upcoming flick. Bullock will play Debbie Ocean, sister to Clooney's character Danny Ocean, from the first three instalments, and will serve as the link between the films. After planning and organising the biggest robbery of the century, Debbie brings together the group of criminals to carry out the job. There's a lot of hype around this film and we have strong hopes that it'll gain the same sort of reaction as the original Ocean's films.
'Creed 2' - November 2018
News of 'Creed 2' began circulating late last year when Sylvester Stallone let the cat out of the bag via a post on his Instagram page. 'Creed' was one of the big hits of 2016, and definitely a worthy continuation of the 'Rocky' franchise. Stallone reprised the most famous role of his career as Rocky, whilst Michael B. Jordan played Adonis, the son of Apolo Creed. Dolph Lundgren will also return to the franchise as Ivan Drago, and it is rumoured that the boxer's son will feature in the storyline, although no actor has yet been confirmed for the role.
'The Maze Runner 3' - 26th January 2018
The last film in the 'The Maze Runner' trilogy, 'The Death Cure', is to hit cinemas a little later than the production team first hoped. Originally, the film was set for release of 17th February 2017, but a serious car accident on set, in which protagonist Dylan O'Brien was injured, meant that filming had to come to a stop, consequently delaying the premiere. Despite the issues however, the trailer for the film hasn't failed to attract fans back to the trilogy and it's now hoped that the production will do well enough to inspire future dystopian films.
'Aquaman' - 21st December 2018
Zack Snyder gave us a quick glance at Aquaman back in 'Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice', but it was in last year's 'Justice League' that we really got to know the King of Atlantis. Jason Momoa fits the role perfectly, so much so that he's easily one of the most striking DC characters onscreen yet. 'Aquaman' is the only DC film releasing this year following the not so successful 'Justice League' so the studio really needs to nail this one if they're to impress the critics. With James Wan behind the cameras and Jason Momoa's charisma, we have no doubt that they'll be able to pull it off.
'Pacific Rim: Maelstrom' - 23rd March 2018
Back in 2013, Guillermo del Toro brought us 'Pacific Rim', a film that, despite the collaboration of big names like Idris Elba and Charlie Hunnam, was unable to rouse as big of a reaction in the US as it did worldwide. The film ended up bringing in 400,000 dollars which was just enough to justify a sequel. Although its been almost 5 years since the release of the first instalment, we'll finally get to see the continuation, 'Pacific Rim: Maelstrom' this year. Steven S. Deknight has taken over Del Toro's role as director for the sequel and Elba and Hunnam have been replaced with John Boyega and Scott Eastwood.
'X-Men: Dark Phoenix' - 2nd November 2018
'X-Men: Apocalypse' didn't just divide both critics and fans, but also failed to do as well as Fox had hoped at the box office. After its release, there were concerns over whether Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence and James McAvoy would return to the franchise, however, after the announcement of 'X-Men: Dark Phoenix', it's been confirmed that the three will indeed be reprising their roles as Magneto, Mystique and Charles Xavier. After the flop that was 'X-Men 3: The Last Stand', it seems as though Simon Kinberg has well and truly learned his lesson with this film. It was feared the production would be cancelled when Disney bought out Fox, however, given that the film is already complete, we're pleased to announce it'll hit cinemas this year.
'Venom' - 5th October 2018
Many fans were left confused when Sony announced it would be producing a saga of films about Spider-Man characters that wouldn't feature the superhero himself. 'Venom' will function as the first film, and a test to see whether a film within the Spider-Man universe sans Spider-Man could work. There's been more worry than excitement over the film if anything, however, when Tom Hardy announced he'd be playing the protagonist, all doubts turned into hype, and fans are now counting on him to make it a success. One of the biggest villains from the Spider-Man comics, Carnage has been confirmed as Venom's nemesis in the film.
'Mary Poppins Returns' - 21st December 2018
A whopping 54 years after the release of the original 'Mary Poppins' comes 'Mary Poppins Returns'. The film will be set 25 years after the original and will see a grown up Jane and Michael Banks, the latter who now has children of his own, reencounter the magical nanny. Emily Blunt has taken over Julie Andrews' role as Poppins, and given how dearly many hold the original film, we believe Blunt has big boots to fill. Ben Whishaw, who plays Michael in the sequel, is confident she's done a good job.
'A Wrinkle in Time' - 23rd March 2018
Based on the novel of the same name by Madeleine L'Engle, 'A Wrinkle in Time' will be the second attempt on Disney's behalf to bring the story to the big screen. The first try was back in 2003. The film features talents such as Oprah Winfrey, Reese Witherspoon, Chris Pine and Storm Reid as the protagonist, Meg Murry. 'A Wrinkle in Time' is a story about time travel, and whilst the novel has been on school reading lists in the US, it's not been given the same treatment in the UK, so we'll be a little less familiar with the plot line than our neighbours across the pond.
'The Nutcracker and the Four Realms' - 26th October 2018
The Disney adaptation of the classic 'The Nutcracker' is set for UK release near the end of the year. 'The Nutcracker and the Four Realms' stars Morgan Freeman, Helen Mirren, Keira Knightley and Mackenzie Foy as protagonist, Clara. Forbes have revealed that, for them, this particular production doesn't feel like Disney and wonder whether that will effect the films success in any way. If the trailer is anything to go by, Disney have, as always, brought their own twist to the classic, whilst still remaining true to the story. We'll have to wait to see whether it's any good.
'X-Men: The New Mutants' - 22nd April 2018
Hold onto your hats 'X-Men' fans because there's a new storyline coming our way. 'The New Mutants' will introduce us to five new characters all with unique mutations much like the other 'X-Men' characters. From the trailer, it looks like the young mutants, unaware of their capabilities, are being kept in an asylum style hospital that looks more like a prison, if anything. It's a much darker film than we're used to from the 'X-Men' franchise and we can't wait!