Film & TV

2019 Film Preview: Superheroes, Remakes, Horror and More

Courtesy of Marvel Studios

Sequels, prequels, remakes and reboots have been a hallmark of cinema in the 2010s, and 2019 will be no different. 

Disney’s trend of recreating classic animated films in live-action form will be in full-swing this year, with live-action versions of “Dumbo,” “Aladdin” and “The Lion King” set to premiere on March 29, May 24 and July 19, respectively. Disney will also be releasing the fourth installment of the beloved “Toy Story” series June 21, which has been highly anticipated since it was announced in 2014.

The superhero movie trend isn’t going anywhere either. In recent years, all three “Avengers” movies have garnered spots in the top 10 highest-grossing films of all time. This year, Marvel is set to release “Captain Marvel” March 8, making it the company’s first movie with a female lead, with Brie Larson (“Room,” “21 Jump Street”) making her debut as the eponymous hero. The film, which takes place in the ‘90s, will be one of the company’s few films that precedes current events of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

The most anticipated superhero film of the year is almost definitely “Avengers: Endgame,” hitting theaters Apr. 26. In 2018, audiences watched as the mad titan Thanos (Josh Brolin) wiped out half of all living creatures in “Avengers: Infinity War.” 

After a year-long wait, “Avengers: Endgame” will hopefully show audiences how the universe is restored, although it’s suspected longtime fan-favorites, such as Iron Man (Robert Downey, Jr.) and Captain America (Chris Evans) could die in the process, as both actors’ contracts have expired.

It’s also a year of firsts for DC Films, a rival of Marvel Studios, with the release of their first comedic movie. “Shazam!” — an action-comedy where a 14-year-old boy gains the ability to turn into an adult superhero — will be in theaters Apr. 5 starring TV and Broadway actor Zachary Levi.

Those who aren’t fans of superhero movies can look forward to exciting new horror films such as “Happy Death Day 2U” and “Us.”

“Happy Death Day 2U” is a follow-up to “Happy Death Day (2017),” which follows a girl living in a horror version of “Groundhog Day” a 1993 classic starring Bill Murray, in which his character relives the same day over and over. This year’s sequel brings a similar plot, and Tree Gelbman (Jessica Roth) has to face a new killer and break the murderous cycle.

“Happy Death Day 2U” will be released Feb. 13.

In 2017, actor and comedian Jordan Peele’s screenwriting debut, “Get Out,” was a box-office success garnering multiple awards and nominations, while also serving as a commentary on race relations. “Us” is Peele’s second movie. It follows the story of a black family who encounter their dark dopplegangers on vacation. The movie’s trailer features the doppelgangers looking molten and disturbing while wielding glinting gold scissors. The film should be enough to even make horror fans jump out of their seats.

“Us” stars Lupita N’yong’o (“Black Panther,” “12 Years a Slave”), Winston Duke (“Black Panther,” “Avengers: Infinity War”) and Elisabeth Moss (“The Handmaid’s Tale,” “Mad Men”) and will be in theaters March 22.

Quentin Tarantino buffs can look forward to “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood,” set to premiere July 26. Tarantino’s newest historical fiction piece takes place in 1969 Los Angeles and is said to involve the Manson Family. The cast includes Leonardo DiCaprio (“The Revenant,” “The Wolf of Wall Street”), Margot Robbie (“Suicide Squad,” “I, Tonya”) and Brad Pitt (“Inglourious Basterds,” “Fight Club”).

While horror and Tarantino films are known for their gratuitous violence, 2019 will still have plenty of family-friendly options for movie-goers. “Pokemon: Detective Pikachu,” in theaters May 10, stars Ryan Reynolds (“Deadpool,” “Just Friends”) as the voice of everyone’s favorite lightning-tailed monster. Five years after the success of its predecessor, “The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part” is coming Feb. 8, and the long-anticipated “Star Wars: Episode IX” will arrive in theaters Dec. 20. 

Families can also look forward to the sequel to Disney’s “Frozen” with “Frozen 2” coming out Nov. 22.

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