/Film’s 25 Most Anticipated Movies of 2020

Most Anticipated Movies of 2020

With 2019 officially in the record books, it’s time to look ahead. And from the cold wastelands of January, the rest of 2020 certainly looks promising. Well, at least it looks promising for the movies.

After hunkering down and deciding on a list of 25 movies we most wanted to see in the next year (a process that was recorded as a podcast), the team voted on the final ranking. And here we are. These are our 25 most anticipated movies of 2020.

coming 2 america costumes

25. Coming 2 America

August 7, 2020

It’s been over 30 years since Coming to America hit theaters at the height of Eddie Murphy‘s fame in the 1980s. But a sequel is coming late this summer that will have the comedian continuing his comeback, this time as the soon-to-be King of Zamunda. The sequel will see him learning that he has a son that he never knew about back in Queens. On the dying wish of his father (James Earl Jones), Akeem will return to America with his loyal friend Semmi (Arsenio Hall) to bring the new prince, a street-wise hustler named Lavelle (Jermaine Fowler), back to Zamunda. Coming to America still holds up to this day, and with Dolemite is My Name director Craig Brewer at the helm, we’re hoping the long wait will be worth it. (Ethan Anderton)

Fast and Furious 9 cast

24. Fast and Furious 9

May 22, 2020

Justin Lin is back, baby! The director who saved this franchise from oblivion and directed its greatest entry (Fast Five, obviously) is getting back into the driver’s seat to continue the story of Dominic Toretto and his #family. With Dwayne Johnson and Jason Statham out of the picture thanks to their recent Hobbs and Shaw spin-off, and up and coming writer Dan Casey taking over script duties from longtime franchise writer/producer Chris Morgan, we’re hoping this entry will minimize the off-screen drama and breathe some fresh air back into this series after 2017’s creatively lackluster The Fate of the Furious. (Ben Pearson)

Ghostbusters: Afterlife Trailer Breakdown

23. Ghostbusters: Afterlife

July 10, 2020

Fans have been waiting for a sequel to the original Ghostbusters franchise for decades, and now they’re finally getting it. However, this one is going in a much different direction as we follow a family (Carrie Coon, Finn Wolfhard and Mckenna Grace) moving to a small town and learning of their connection to the original Ghostbusters. And it just so happens there’s something strange happening in this neighborhood, prompting some curious kids to step up and use the old Ghostbusters equipment to deal with it. With director Jason Reitman inheriting the franchise from his father Ivan Reitman, we’re interested to see how the Ghostbusters legacy is handled, especially with most of the original cast members returning in some capacity. (Ethan Anderton)

Kenneth Branagh Poirot

22. Death on the Nile

October 9, 2020

Kenneth Branagh‘s Murder on the Orient Express sparked renewed interest in classic Agatha Christie stories and gave A-list stars a place to participate in a delightfully old-school murder mystery. Later this year, Branagh returns to direct and reprise the role of Detective Hercule Poirot, Christie’s most famous literary character. This time, he’ll be joined by Gal Gadot, Armie Hammer, Letitia Wright, Annette Bening, Russell Brand, Rose Leslie, and more for an Egyptian-set adventure centering on a love triangle gone wrong. The novel is a brisk, fun read, and this cast – particularly Gadot, Hammer, and Brand – are absolutely perfect for the roles they’re playing. (Ben Pearson)

21. Birds of Prey

February 7, 2020

Margot Robbie was easily the breakout star of Suicide Squad, but was poorly served by David Ayer’s terrible 2016 comic book movie. But now Harley Quinn is single and at the center of the upcoming Birds of Prey. Much lip service has been paid to the film’s “R-rated girl gang” pitch, which doesn’t exactly inspire confidence in the superhero movie having anything of substance, but the presence of talented women in front of and behind the camera is enough to tilt the scales back toward the positives. Indie director Cathy Yan helms a script by Christina Hodson, who penned the surprisingly heartfelt Bumblebee, and Robbie shares the screen with Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Ewan McGregor, Rosie Perez, and more. The trailers and marketing paint an offbeat and kooky picture of the movie, which looks like it will be riotous good time. (Hoai-Tran Bui)

sopranos prequel movie release date

20. The Many Saints of Newark

September 25, 2020

The idea of a Sopranos prequel gives me immediate pause, but I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t very curious to see how The Many Saints of Newark all turns out. Sopranos creator David Chase is back writing the script, while Sopranos series director Alan Taylor is at the helm. The film is set in the 1960s and ’70s in Newark, and shows us several Sopranos characters in their early days – including Tony Soprano, now played by the late James Gandolfini’s son, Michael Gandolfini. While specific plot details remain mostly in secret, The Sopranos remains a cultural landmark – the show that ushered in the Peak TV age. Returning to this world so many years later could backfire, or it could end up being something iconic. (Chris Evangelista)

Top Gun Maverick trailer

19. Top Gun: Maverick

June 26, 2020

Tom Cruise has been answering Top Gun 2 questions ever since the 1986 original became a huge hit, and I’m honestly glad it’s taken this long to finally materialize. Following an older version of Pete “Maverick” Mitchell as he encounters Goose’s son (played by Miles Teller) is an interesting way for Cruise to comment on his own career and legacy, while also doing some of the jaw-dropping stunts that he’s increasingly embraced over the past decade or so. (This time, he actually pilots a real fighter jet.) The supporting cast is great, too, with Jennifer Connelly, Ed Harris, Jon Hamm, Glen Powell, Val Kilmer, Manny Jacinto, and Lewis Pullman all coming along for the ride. (Ben Pearson)

the personal history of david copperfield review

18. The Personal History of David Copperfield

May 8, 2020

Armando Ianucci! Enough said. The director of The Death of Stalin and creator of sharp satirical TV series like Veep and The Thick of It has not met a genre that he couldn’t brilliantly skewer, and Charles Dickens is his next target in his upcoming film The Personal History of David Copperfield. Starring Dev Patel as the titular character in Ianucci’s twist on the autobiographical Charles Dickens novel, The Personal History of David Copperfield looks like an absolutely hysterical delight. Chris Evangelista, who reviewed it out of TIFF, praised the movie as “a film bustling with wit, grace, slapstick comedy, and one big beating heart.” Plus we could always use more movies with the charismatic Patel in the lead. (Hoai-Tran Bui)

halloween kills first look

17. Halloween Kills

October 16, 2020

Even though the end of Halloween (2018) felt like the perfect conclusion to the Michael Myers slasher franchise, we’re still excited to see how writer/director David Gordon Green and co-writer Danny McBride can keep the franchise alive. We’re not sure what to expect after the end of the last movie, but we know the sequel will bring back another legacy character in the form of Anthony Michael Hall as a grown up Tommy Doyle, not to mention Kyle Richards reprising her role as Lindsey Wallace from the original movie. With this being the first of two back-to-back sequels, we can’t wait to see what happens to Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis) and her family next. (Ethan Anderton)

Raya and the Last Dragon concept art

16. Raya and the Last Dragon

November 25, 2020

Disney has been making strides for better representation in its recent animated films, and it’s resulted in some of their best films: the dazzling Moana, the severely underrated Princess and the Frog. The China-set Raya and the Last Dragon looks to be another hit for the House of Mouse. Directed by Paul Briggs and Dean Wellins, and co-directed by John Ripa, from a screenplay by Crazy Rich Asians writer Adele Lim, Raya and the Last Dragon follows a warrior named Raya who searches for the last dragon in the world. It’s easy to forget in this era of remakes and sequels that Disney is responsible for some of the most original and unique animated films of the last decade, and Raya and the Last Dragon looks to have a fantastical story and rich animation style that could be one of the most beautiful things Disney has done lately. (Hoai-Tran Bui)

New Candyman

15. Candyman

June 12, 2020

Candyman remains one of the all-time great horror movies. It’s no mere slasher – it’s a thoughtful, disturbing exploration of race, gender, and urban legends. While I’d normally be a little hesitant about remaking such a stone-cold classic, the new Candyman has a lot going for it. First and foremost: this remake is being told by black voices, with Jordan Peele and Nia DaCosta writing the script, and DaCosta directing. As fantastic as the original Candyman was, it was also a film from a white filmmaker based on a short story by a white author – both of whom were from the U.K. But since the story is so inherently linked to race, and racism, in America, recontextualizing that story from an African American perspective is intriguing, and sure to result in something different.  (Chris Evangelista)

The Eternals Comic-Con

14. Eternals

November 6, 2020

In a post-Avengers: Endgame world, Marvel Studios is simultaneously on top of the world and facing a new mountain to climb. With so many of the company’s keystone characters retired, they’re entering a rebuilding phase, where new heroes and new teams need to be constructed to keep audiences on board for the next decade. The most promising of the bunch is Eternals from The Rider director Chloe Zhao, which tells the story of a team of immortal superheroes who have been protecting the earth for generations. Zhao is promising enough, but look at this cast: Angelina Jolie, Richard Madden, Salma Hayek, Kumail Nanjiani, Gemma Chan, Kit Harington, Brian Tyree Henry, Barry Keoghan, and Dong-seok Ma, among others. (Jacob Hall)

west side story first look

13. West Side Story

December 18, 2020

Steven Spielberg has been talking about making a musical for almost his entire career, so how can you not get excited over the fact that he’s finally doing it? I’ll confess I’m not the biggest West Side Story fan, but the idea of Spielberg doing a musical, complete with a script by frequent collaborator Tony Kushner (LincolnMunich), is too damn good to pass up. Give me a trailer for this bad boy already, please. (Chris Evangelista)

soul trailer

12. Soul

June 19, 2020

It’s hard not to get excited about a Pixar movie since they’re basically the gold standard in studio animation. But we’re even more excited about this one since it comes from Monsters Inc., Up, and Inside Out director Pete Docter. The story follows an aspiring jazz musician (Jamie Foxx) who finally gets the chance to perform on stage, but suddenly may not be able to make the date when he an accident results in his death, sending him to a place called the “You Seminar” where souls are placed into babies before they’re born. There, he must enlist the help of jaded soul called 22 (Tina Fey) in order to get back to Earth. It feels like it has the spirit of Inside Out with an equally unique premise, and we can’t wait to see it. (Ethan Anderton)

Wes Anderson

11. The French Dispatch

2020, TBD

Wes Anderson takes his time between movies, but the results are always worth the wait. The director’s first live-action film since 2014’s masterful The Grand Budapest Hotel is described as a love letter to journalism and journalists set in a fictional newspaper in France. Knowing Anderson’s past work, we can expect exacting production design, wry comedy, and a raw human core. And like Anderson’s past work, the cast here is jus absurdly stacked, including Timothee Chalamet, Saoirse Ronan, Elisabeth Moss, Willem Dafoe, Tilda Swinton, Bill Murray, Jason Schwartzman, Christoph Waltz, Owen Wilson, Benicio del Toro and more. (Jacob Hall)

In The Heights

10. In the Heights

June 26, 2020

This is a new big screen musical based on the Broadway hit from Hamilton creator Lin-Manuel Miranda, adapted by screenwriter Quiara Alegría Hudes and directed by Jon M. Chu. That should be all you need to know to get excited about this. But if that doesn’t help, the lively trailer promises a classic movie musical with contemporary sensibilities, both in storytelling and in music. The cast doesn’t feature a lot of big names, but it looks to have some bright, colorful musical sequences and teases a story that feels like this generation’s West Side Story, perhaps even more than the actual West Side Story remake from Steven Spielberg. (Ethan Anderton)

9. Rebecca

2020, TBD

Daphne du Maurier’s classic novel has already gotten a near-perfect adaptation by Alfred Hitchcock, but Free Fire and Kill List director Ben Wheatley could add an intriguing new twist to Rebecca. Before your eyes start to glaze over at the prospect of a Gothic period film, let me give you this pitch: A naive new wife is plagued by the memory of her rich husband’s universally loved first wife, Rebecca, whose presence looms throughout the cavernous mansion despite being long dead of a strange accident. Armie Hammer and Lily James are the sexy, sexy stars. Kristin Scott Thomas is the severe Mrs. Danvers, the loyal servant of Rebecca who terrorizes her master’s new wife. Rebecca is the best ghost story without an actual ghost, a tale of a woman so magnetic that she begins to dominate every corner of the new wife’s mind and identity. It’s a psychological thriller at its finest, and Wheatley, who is best known for hyper-violent action flicks, seems like he could add a real horror edge to the classic Gothic romance. (Hoai-Tran Bui)

the invisible man first look

8. The Invisible Man

February 28, 2020

After the failure of the bloated reboot of The Mummy and the quick death of the Dark Universe, someone at Universal realized that the studio’s stable of classic monsters were never going to be modern blockbuster characters. They were built on a foundation of actual horror stories, films made on low budgets by interesting directors interested in telling spooky, character-driven tales of a terror. Enter director Leigh Whannell, director the good Insidious 3 and the terrific Upgrade with a new take on The Invisible Man. In this modern update, Elisabeth Moss plays a woman whose abusive boyfriend may not be dead – he may be just be much harder to see now. Moss and Whannell make for an enticing pairing, but it’s the promise of a new age of proper Universal Monster movies that has us truly excited. (Jacob Hall)

7. Mank

2020, TBD

David Fincher hasn’t helmed a movie since 2014’s Gone Girl, and that’s way too damn long ago. We need more Fincher films, and now we’re getting one. Mank tells the story of Herman J. Mankiewicz, the screenwriter of Citizen Kane, and will follow the writer’s clashes with Kane director Orson Welles. Having Fincher take on this material – which is apparently going to be shot in black and white – is bound to result in something special. This is a Netflix movie, too, which means Fincher likely has free range to do whatever the hell he wants. (Chris Evangelista)

A Quiet Place 2 teaser

6. A Quiet Place Part II

March 20, 2020

John Krasinski returns to write and direct this follow-up to his acclaimed horror film. This sequel appears to give us some insight into what happened when the franchise’s sound-sensitive aliens first invaded Earth, while also continuing the story of the Abbott family, with Emily Blunt, Millicent Simmonds, and Noah Jupe all venturing beyond their family farm to survive. (The old “it’s a prequel and a sequel” technique.) On their silent journey, the family will encounter new characters played by Cillian Murphy and Djimon Hounsou, and perhaps learn that there are more dangerous things out there than those terrifying aliens. This looks tense as hell, and I can’t wait to see if Krasinski can top himself. (Ben Pearson)

no time to die teaser

5. No Time to Die

April 10, 2020

Of all the films on this list, No Time to Die is the only one that we’ll still be talking about 20 years from now. After all, every James Bond movie – the great ones, the awful ones, the painfully mediocre ones – form a massive tapestry that continues to be analyzed and examined by pop culture scholars on a regular basis. But No Time to Die also seems promising on its own! It’s the fifth and final outing for Daniel Craig as Agent 007 and it features the franchise’s first American director with Cary Fukunaga, easily the most outside-the-box filmmaker choice for James Bond in a long time. Everyone knows that Craig needs to go out on a high note. We’ll talk about whether or not they stick the landing for years to come. (Jacob Hall)

wonder woman 1984 image

4. Wonder Woman 1984

June 4, 2020

Director Patty Jenkins and her incandescent star Gal Gadot breathed new life into Warner Bros.’ dour DC films, proving that superhero movies could still be sincere, spectacular, and yes, fun. Wonder Woman was a huge critical and commercial hit when it flew into theaters in 2017, proving that female superheroes could be as much — or maybe even more — of a box office draw as men. Fans of the optimistic Amazonian princess have been waiting with baited breath for her return and the return of the inexplicably alive Steve Trevor (Chris Pine), which we’re willing to forgive for Gadot and Pine’s searing chemistry. Wonder Woman 2020 seems like a far different sequel to its 2017 World War I-set predecessor. Set to the political backdrop of ’80s Washington, D.C., Wonder Woman 2020 follows Diana as she is faced with two new foes — Pedro Pascal‘s businessman Maxwell Lord and Kristen Wiig‘s Cheetah — and the mysterious return of her soulmate, Steve Trevor. Sinister dealings and love in a time of neon leggings? Oh yeah, we’re in. (Hoai-Tran Bui)

Dune TV series

3. Dune

December 18, 2020

After Arrival, Sicario, and Blade Runner 2049, director Denis Villeneuve has earned enough faith from us to automatically enter a list like this. But pair him with Frank Herbert’s Dune, the sprawling science fiction novel that feels like the halfway point between Star Wars and Lord of the Rings, and you have the makings of a bonafide blockbuster even unlike anything we have seen before. This story of treachery and war on a distant alien planet has endured for over half a century for a reason, but knowing that Villeneuve and his collaborators have a chance to update its more dated aspects while making use of its iconic world is a thrilling thought. Plus, that cast is nothing short of astonishing: Timothee Chalamet, Oscar Isaac, Rebecca Ferguson, Stellan Skarsgard, Dave Bautista, Josh Brolin, Javier Bardem, Zendaya and Jason Momoa. (Jacob Hall)

last night in soho time travel

2. Last Night in Soho

September 25, 2020

Edgar Wright has dabbled in various genres before, but all of his movies, when you get right down to it, have been comedies. Last Night in Soho is different – it’s a full-blown psychological horror movie inspired by films like Repulsion. The story jumps back and forth in time, with a woman in the present day (Thomasin McKenzie) becoming obsessed with the story of a woman from the 1960s (Anya Taylor-Joy). Wright has already proven himself to a master craftsman when it comes to visual storytelling, and I can’t wait to see how he employs those skills on a non-comedy. (Chris Evangelista)

tenet first look

1. Tenet

July 17, 2020

Any time a new Christopher Nolan movie is announced, it’s cause for celebration. But Tenet looks like a return to Nolan’s Inception-level storytelling:  it’s an ambitious, original, mega-budgeted thriller about the world of international espionage that seems to have a time travel component to it. No wonder it’s so high on our collective list. Add actors like Robert Pattinson, John David Washington, Elizabeth Debicki, Kenneth Branagh, Michael Caine, Himesh Patel, and Clémence Poésy to the mix, and this is a no-brainer for /Film’s overall number one. The only problem is that we have to wait until summer to see it. That time travel sure would be useful right about now. (Ben Pearson)

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