This article comes from Den of Geek UK.
With summer blockbuster season 2017 in full swing, and with The Fate of the Furious speeding over the $1 billion mark already, a bunch of filmmakers are furiously putting together their films for release this time next year (or thereabouts). Here, as things stand, is the state of summer blockbuster season 2018. Keep in mind dates are likely quick to change.
Also, we’ve not included unnamed films: Universal, for instance, has reserved a slot for one of its classic monster universe movies, but not told anybody what it is yet. As more information pops up, we’ll keep this list up to date.
Tomb Raider (March 16)
Summer blockbuster season circa 2018 effectively kicks off in March with the Warner Bros. backed big screen reboot of the Tomb Raider movie franchise out first. Alicia Vikander is taking on the role of Lara Croft in this one, with director Roar Uthaug plucked from his successful disaster movie, The Wave, to make his English language directorial debut here.
Walton Goggins, Dominic West, and Hannah John-Kamen are also in the cast for this adaptation, which will be drawing more from the recent video game installments. WB will want sequels, of course.
Robin Hood (March 23)
There always seems to be a bunch of Robin Hood projects on the go, and Lionsgate is going down the dark and gritty route with Robin Hood: Origins. On paper, this is ground that the Russell Crowe-headlined and Ridley Scott-directed Robin Hood movie tried to cover back in 2010. That was due to inspire sequels, but few fancied watching Scott and Crowe do another one.
Lionsgate is hoping that putting Taron Egerton at the heart of its film will be a smarter move, and he’s surrounded by a strong cast, including Jamie Foxx, Jamie Dornan, Eve Hewson, Ben Mendelsohn, and Tim Minchin. Note that the film is no longer called Robin Hood: Origins. It’s plain old Robin Hood now, and Otto Bathurst (Peaky Blinders) is directing.
Ready Player One (March 30)
Whilst Steven Spielberg’s adaptation of Ernest Cline’s nerd-gold tome Ready Player One has been in post-production, the bearded one will have found time to launch, direct and release The Post, starring Tom Hanks. Which gives a flavor as to the extensive post-production work Ready Player One will require, to bring a mix of dystopia and ’80s movie and video game references to the big screen. Then again, it could also be in part influenced by the film originally due out in time for Christmas 2017, yet moving when Star Wars: The Last Jedi got delayed itself to the upcoming holiday season.
Spielberg’s cast here includes Tye Sheridan, Mark Rylance, Ben Mendelsohn (he’ll be doing a fair amount of press next March…), T.J. Miller, Simon Pegg, Olivia Cooke, and Hannah John-Kamen. We are hugely looking forward to this one too. Zak Penn (Game Over) has penned the script, by the way…
Magic Camp (April 6)
Disney’s first entry into summer blockbuster season 2018 isn’t actually one of its big franchise movies. Rather, it’s got potential franchise-launcher Magic Camp from Mean Girls director Mark Waters.
The film features Gillian Jacobs, Jeffrey Tambor, and Adam Devine, and it follows a summer camp for wannabe young magicians. It sounds Harry Potter-y on paper, but actually, the film will focus on an end-of-summer magic competition. It’s just the kind of film that you may not have heard of now, but may just be unable to escape next spring. We’re certainly not going to knock Disney remembering to take a few punts outside of its usual collection of franchises either.
The studio also has A Wrinkle in Time set for early March too. We’re looking forward to that.
X-Men: The New Mutants (April 13)
Here we go. The first full-on comic book movie of the summer, and the first of three X-Men films that 20th Century Fox has earmarked for a 2018 release. The Fault in Our Stars director Josh Boone is steering this one, and the implication is that it will have a much more grounded and dramatic (read: Young Adult) foundation than recent X-Men movies.
The New Mutants will focus on the first bunch of graduates from Professor Charles Xavier’s school for gifted children, and strong rumor suggests that James McAvoy will be back as Professor X for a start. The rest of the cast remains unconfirmed, but some of the younger members of the X-Men: Apocalypse cast are possible candidates for an appearance. Rumors also seem to heavily imply that Game of Thrones‘ Maisie Williams and The Witch‘s Anya Taylor-Joy have been cast in lead roles.
The Pact (April 20)
Summer season comes with R-rated comedies as part of the deal, and The Pact comes from Kay Cannon, who wrote the Pitch Perfect trilogy of movies (Pitch Perfect 3 is out at the end of the year). Cannon also makes her directorial debut here with the story following three dads who try to stop their daughters from having sex on prom night. Leslie Mann and John Cena lead the cast.
Rampage (April 20)
Dwayne Johnson traditionally has two or three movies out each summer, and 2018 ain’t bucking that trend. Firstly then is Rampage, which is based on the monsters-destroying-buildings video game of the 1980s. Given how thin the plot of the Rampage games was, it’s basically an excuse for Johnson and his San Andreas director Brad Peyton to wreak further havoc, and pretty much put together whatever plot they like to set it against (Ryan Engle and Carlton Cuse have worked on the script). The supporting cast includes Naomie Harris, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, and Malin Akerman.
Avengers: Infinity War (May 4)
Don’t expect too many films to schedule themselves around this one. The apex of Marvel’s phase three of movies, Avengers: Infinity War – to be directly followed by a thus far unnamed Avengers movie in summer 2019 – is set to tie up the Thanos saga that’s been bubbling since way back in phase one.
Directors Joe and Anthony Russo jump from the Captain America films to this and the next Avengers movie. And well, you know, pretty much all of the Marvel gang are in it. The Guardians of the Galaxy, Captain America, Black Widow, Doctor Strange, Thor, Iron Man, Spider-Man, Nick Fury, Scarlet Watch, Vision – you name ‘em, they’re likely to be there.
In a summer not shy of huge movies, this is one of the ones expected to comfortably cruise past $1 billion of box office takings. If they get the film right, maybe even $2 billion is on the table.
It lands in the UK a week earlier than in the U.S.
Life of the Party (May 11)
A third project for director Ben Falcone and star Melissa McCarthy, who co-write the script too on this one. And happy to be married in real life, they’ve thus far put together Tammy and The Boss, two modestly profitable movies. Details for Life of the Party are under wraps, save for Gillian Jacobs and Maya Rudolph co-star. Oh, and Christina Aguilera is in there somewhere too…
Star Wars: Han Solo (May 25)
Ah, let’s just deliver the money straight to Disney, shall we? Another comfortable $1 billion in the bank here, as directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller dig into the early life of Han Solo and Chewie, with Alden Ehrenreich stepping into Harrison Ford’s clobber. Emilia Clarke, Thandie Newton, Woody Harrelson, and Donald Glover as Lando Calrissian are in the supporting cast, and Jon and Lawrence Kasdan have penned the script. We suspect this won’t be the last we see of Ehrenreich as Solo, either…
Deadpool 2 (June 1)
Who’s brave enough to come out the week after a Star Wars movie? Ah, good on you, Ryan.
The return of Deadpool is comfortably one of the most anticipated of 2018’s blockbuster releases, with Ryan Reynolds leading a cast that includes Morena Baccarin, Josh Brolin, T.J. Miller, Brianna Hildebrand, and swearing. Lots of swearing. David Leith, co-director of John Wick, is helming this time with Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick again on screenplay duties, plus a bit of help from Drew Goddard. Expect cash, and no shortage of it.
Ocean’s Eight (June 8)
Perhaps not the most expected franchise revival, but the bringing back of the Ocean’s capers may just prove a smart move from Warner Bros. Ocean’s Eight immediately feels distinct from much of the rest of the fodder we’re getting next summer.
It’s a new crew this time, led by Sandra Bullock. She’s joined by Anne Hathaway, Sarah Paulson, Dakota Fanning, Cate Blanchett, Katie Holmes, Helena Bonham-Carter,Rihanna, Mindy Kaling, Awkwafina, and Richard Armitage.
Gary Ross, who helmed the first Hunger Games film, is directing this one, having co-written the screenplay with Olivia Milch.
Bumblebee (June 8)
The Transformers cinematic universe continues without Michael Bay directing for the first time. Instead, for the Bumblebee spin-off movie (a prequel story, we’re told), Laika studios boss and Kubo & The Two Strings helmer Travis Knight is helming.
Christina Hodson is writing the script, although casting hasn’t yet been confirmed. Paramount will be hoping that this vindicates its gamble on annual Transformers films, and Knight certainly seems a bold, good choice to direct. Tough competition in June, though.
The Incredibles 2 (June 15)
If this writer had to pick just one of next summer’s films to transport in front of eyeballs right now, this is the one I’d use my time travel powers on. Brad Bird returns to animation – following Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol and Tomorrowland – with the eagerly, eagerly, eagerly, eagerly, eagerly awaited sequel to The Incredibles. Few plot details have been released as of yet, just an out of office message written for next June….
Jurassic World 2 (June 22)
Universal waited over a decade following Jurassic Park III to bring the fourth Jurassic Park film to the big screen. With director Colin Trevorrow at the helm, their patience was rewarded. Over $1.5 billion was banked, and a further instalment was set up. However, as Trevorrow is off making Star Wars: Episode IX, he’s handed directing duties to J.A. Bayona (who made the glorious A Monster Calls most recently), although Trevorrow and Derek Connolly penned a screenplay for the Jurassic World sequel.
Cast-wise, Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard lead the returnees, and it’s already been confirmed we’re getting James Cromwell and bonus Jeff Goldblum for this go-round. Even considering the competition it’s up against, this may yet be the film to beat at the box office next summer – not least because not too much competition immediately follows it. After all, jumping into the jaws of T. Rex is most inadvisable.
Barbie (June 29)
Despite losing Amy Schumer from the lead role, Sony is still pressing ahead with its live action Barbie movie, that Diablo Cody, Kim Caramele, and Jenny Bicks have been working on the screenplay for. Given that the film doesn’t have a director in place as this article is being written, it may yet be a project Sony pushes back. The studio hasn’t announced Schumer’s replacement yet either. Watch this space…
The Purge 4 (July 4)
After the excellent The Purge: Anarchy, the third film in the series – The Purge: Election Year – felt a little bit like a let down. Amidst talk of The Purge going to television as a series, however, comes a fourth cinematic adventure. This is the first not to be directed by James DeMonaco, although he remains committed as the writer, as with the past three films. A new helmer has not yet been announced, but a Fourth of July release date has been earmarked.
Ant-Man And The Wasp (July 6)
Arriving a week after its UK release (unfortunately) Ant-Man and the Wasp sees Peyton Reed back as director with Paul Rudd and Evangeline Lilly headlining in the sequel to 2015’s Ant-Man. Michael Douglas and Michael Pena are also confirmed to be back, with the story for this one coming from Rudd and Adam McKay. Andrew Barrer and Gabriel Ferrari are penning the final screenplay.
No plot details have been confirmed as of yet. It’ll be the third Marvel release of the year (given that Black Panther is set for February, just ahead of blockbuster season).
The Spy Who Dumped Me (July 6)
It sounds like an Austin Powers movie. Instead, it’s a comedy starring Mila Kunis and Kate McKinnon as two best friends who discover that one of their exes was a spy. Susanna Fogel (Life Partners) is set to direct. No further details are known at the moment, though.
Hotel Transylvania 3 (July 13)
In a summer light on obvious outright family movies – since Disney pushed back Gigantic and Wreck-It Ralph 2, and has only The Incredibles 2 is fighting for your animation cash – Hotel Transylvania 3 is likely to do enough to persuade Sony to greenlight a fourth film. Adam Sandler isn’t writing this one, but leads the voice cast again, along with Selena Gomez and Andy Samberg. Genndy Tartakovsky, who toyed with handing the third film over to someone else, is back to direct. The last film grossed $478 million worldwide. This one should break half a billion. It’s turning into one of the biggest, active animated movie franchises on the planet.
Skyscraper (July 13)
Where’s Dwayne Johnson gone? Ah, right here. What’s he doing this time? Defusing a hostage situation in a big tower block in China in the role of a former FBI hostage rescue team leader. Is his family trapped in the building too? Yep. That’ll do.
Rawson Marshall Thurber, of We’re The Millers, Dodgeball, and Central Intelligence vintage has written the script and will direct. We’re in. As long as Jason Statham doesn’t fight a shark later in the summer, this might just be the gleeful treat of the season.
Alita: Battle Angel (July 20)
A project that James Cameron was set to direct for a long time before his Avatar commitments took precedence. Instead, he’s overseeing the project while Robert Rodriguez – with his first feature since Sin City: A Dame To Kill For – has directed it. Michelle Rodriguez, Jennifer Connelly, Mahershala Ali, Christoph Waltz, Jackie Earle Haley, Casper Van Diem, Jeff Fahey, and Ed Skrein are in the cast. They’re also working from a screenplay by Cameron and Laeta Kalogridis. It’s all based on the manga by Yukito Kishiro. You’d imagine if it did well that there are many sequels planned.
Mission: Impossible 6 (July 27)
Christopher McQuarrie becomes the first person to direct two Mission: Impossible films, following up the very successful Rogue Nation with the sixth screen adventure of Tom Cruise’s Ethan Hunt. No Jeremy Renner this time (his Avengers schedule is keeping him busy elsewhere), but we do get Rebecca Ferguson back, the first time a woman has reprised a role in the franchise, also a signifier of how well received she and Rogue Nation tended to be. Simon Pegg, Henry Cavill, Alec Baldwin, Ving Rhames, and Sean Harris also are appearing. McQuarrie has again penned the screenplay. We’re promised a very big stunt again with this one, but hopefully too, the kind of exciting caper we get when these films are on form.
Holmes and Watson (August 3)
There’s a bit of cash in the whole Sherlock Holmes thing these days, and that’s just what Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly will be hoping for. They’re taking the lead roles in a comedy take on Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s characters, alongside Kelly Macdonald, Ralph Fiennes, Rebecca Hall, Hugh Laurie, and Rob Brydon. Etan Cohen, director of Get Hard, is helming this one too, having also written the script.
The Predator (August 3)
Knocked back six months from its expected February 2018 release, The Predator sees cult movie darling Shane Black directing from a script that he wrote with The Monster Squad’s Fred Dekker. It’s going to be an R-rated revival of The Predator films, the first of which Black himself enjoyed a small part in. Boyd Holbrook, Olivia Munn, Thomas Jane, Keegan-Michael Key, Trevante Rhodes, Alfie Allen, Yvonne Strahovski, and Edward James Olmos comprise much of the ensemble. The hunt also takes things into the heartland, intriguingly enough.
Scarface (August 10)
Here is yet another remake of Scarface, this time with Diego Luna taking on the role of Tony. Antoine Fuqua was supposed to go from The Magnificent Seven remake to this, but he dropped out instead to make The Equalizer 2. For Universal to hit its planned August 2018 release for the new Scarface, it does need to appoint a new director soon. It seems to have a script in place by Terence Winter, the creator of Boardwalk Empire. The Coen Brothers are even purported to have given the material a once-over at some point. The new Scarface will be Los Angeles-set, focusing on a Mexican immigrant. Donald will be thrilled.
Meg (August 10)
The Statham. A big shark. Like a really big freaking shark. Fighting each other. Thank you, movie gods. Thank you.