The Most Anticipated Movies Still Coming in 2021by IMDb-Editors | last updated - 2 weeks ago
IMDb editors look at the most anticipated movie premieres expected through the end of this year. Release dates updated as of Sept. 7.
Space Jam: A New Legacy | In Theaters and on HBO Max on Friday, July 16
Who could fill the sneakers of the legendary Michael Jordan in a Space Jam sequel other than present-day superstar LeBron James? The 1996 original was a joyful mashup of live-action comedy and animated adventure in the land of Looney Tunes, and fans have long been waiting for iconic characters like Bugs Bunny, Sylvester and Tweety, and Elmer Fudd to return for some more Toon Squad court time. For producer Ryan Coogler’s take, we can look forward to more high-tech effects, Zendaya as the sultry voice of Lola Bunny, plus Don Cheadle and Sonequa Martin-Green joining the cast.
Toofaan | Premieres on Prime Video on Friday, July 16
We can’t wait to see director-actor duo Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra and Farhan Akhtar team up together to work on a new sports drama after their award-winning collaboration on Bhaag Milkha Bhaag. Akhtar trained with former kickboxing champion Drew Neal to get in shape for the role. We look forward to seeing how Akhtar, a producer on the project, adds his own take to this underdog story of a former boxer's journey back into the ring.
Old | In Theaters on Friday, July 23
The graphic novel Sandcastle serves as the departure point for M. Night Shyamalan's latest thriller, a story that is said to begin with the discovery of a dad body — sorry, dead body — on a beach. Thomasin McKenzie stars (we loved her in Leave No Trace and Jojo Rabbit).
Jungle Cruise | In Theaters and on Disney Plus Premier Access on Friday, July 30
With an initial summer 2020 release date, Disney’s Jungle Cruise has been simmering on the back burner for quite some time, but with Disneyland reopened, what better time to dive into this action-adventure film, based on a theme park ride? We are so into the witty and daring duo of Dwayne Johnson and Emily Blunt as a riverboat captain and researcher on a mission in the Amazon, supplemented with appearances by Jesse Plemons, Edgar Ramírez, and Paul Giamatti.
The Green Knight | In Theaters on Friday, July 30
This Arthurian legend has been everything from an 80s fantasy film (with Sean Connery) to the plot of an "Adventure Time" episode, and now it's writer/director David Lowery to take it back to the big screen. Dev Patel is a rightful heir to starring roles like this, and we're way curious to see how Lowery (A Ghost Story) imbues this tale with images of ghosts and giants and mortals. Patel plays Sir Gawain, King Arthur's nephew and one of the Knights of the Round Table, while Ralph Ineson — who you might recognize from "Game of Thrones," The Witch, or the last few Harry Potter movies — will give some dimension to the mysterious Green Knight, whose relationship with Gawain has been discussed and interpreted for centuries.
Stillwater | In Theaters on Friday, July 30
Matt Damon gets back into Bourne mode: tough southern dad edition, for this crime thriller based loosely on the Amanda Knox case. Damon portrays Oklahoma oil "roughneck" Bill Baker, who sets out to prove his daughter’s innocence in a murder committed in Marseille, France. It looks like he’ll do whatever it takes to get his kid (played by Abigail Breslin) out of jail, and we're looking forward to seeing Damon back in an action role.
The Suicide Squad | In Theaters on Friday, Aug. 6
Love it or hate it, 2016's Suicide Squad sparked serious enthusiasm for a DC supervillain team-up movie, and Guardians of the Galaxy director James Gunn has already upped the ante by loading the sequel with a bevy of eclectic anti-heroes, including John Cena's Peacemaker, who's getting his own show on HBO Max next year.
Don't Breathe 2 | In Theaters on Friday, Aug. 13
Don't Breathe turned the tables on the home invasion thriller in 2016 as a genuinely terrifying and wicked little horror film. It seems the tables may be turned once again, as one of horror's more memorable villains (the menacing Stephen Langis now being portrayed as the hero? The trailer sure seems to point in that direction, but we're not going into this one with any assumptions.
Free Guy | In Theaters on Friday, Aug. 13
Ryan Reynolds is Guy, an unsuspecting non-player in an open-world video game, in Shawn Levy's upcoming adventure comedy. Jodie Comer ("Killing Eve") as Milly (A.K.A. Molotov Girl) is the perfect antidote to Guy's sense of child-like oblivion as the pair team up to find meaning in their virtual existence. We can't wait to see Taika Waititi as the bro-tastic game creator, and Joe Keery ("Stranger Things") is always a welcome addition.
CODA | In Theaters and on Apple TV Plus on Friday, Aug. 13
Sian Heder's film about a Child of Deaf Adults navigating life as the only hearing person in her family kicked off Sundance 2021, and the response was pure delight. The funny, feel-good family drama starring Marlee Matlin (Children of a Lesser God), Emilia Jones ("Locke & Key"), and Ferdia Walsh-Peelo (Sing Street) made us laugh and cry, and went on to sell to Apple Studios for a record-breaking $25 million. Definitely worth the price of an Apple TV Plus subscription, if you ask us.
Reminiscence | In Theaters and on HBO Max on Friday, Aug. 20
While we don't have a full picture yet, here's what we know about this one: It’s a romantic sci-fi thriller about the ability to relive memories, it's set in a near-future, flooded Miami, and it's written and directed by Lisa Joy. As huge fans of her work on "Westworld" we’re excited for her feature directorial debut. "Westworld" alums Thandiwe Newton and Angela Sarafyan star alongside Hugh Jackman, Rebecca Ferguson, and Daniel Wu.
Sweet Girl | Premieres on Netflix on Friday, Aug. 20
As much as we love Jason Momoa as Khal Drogo and Aquaman, we’re excited to see him change up his typical role as a Herculean hunk to tackle a Taken-style thriller, in which he seeks justice for the death of his wife while protecting his daughter (Isabela Merced).
Candyman | In Theaters on Friday, Aug. 27
Rarely do we feel like a remake will be able to stand proudly next to the original movie. From what we've seen and heard about director Nia DaCosta's continuation of the Candyman legend — the visualization of horror, the considered social commentary — makes us think she and co-writer Jordan Peele will do more than right by Candyman's legacy.
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings | In Theaters on Friday, Sept. 3
The second movie in Phase Four of the Marvel Cinematic Universe connects all the way back to Iron Man — if your MCU connections are a bit dusty, the terrorist organization Ten Rings kidnapped Tony Stark, and his new hardware was installed while he was their guest. Simu Liu, who broke out in "Blood and Water" and "Kim's Convenience," will portray the master of martial arts and chi, with director Destin Daniel Cretton (Short Term 12, Just Mercy) switching over into action mode.
Cinderella | Premieres on Prime Video on Friday, Sept. 3
Camila Cabello is not the first to step into Cinderella’s glass slippers for a modern, musical re-telling of the tale (we're partial to Brandy and Whitney's take from 1997), but she’s the ultimate pick to play the princess in 2021. The magic has been delayed from an initial February release, but we’re willing to wait with Idina Menzel set to play the evil stepmother and the genius casting of Billy Porter as a non-binary fairy godmother. We're just a little bummed that Shawn Mendes won't make an appearance as Prince Charming.
Malignant | In Theaters and on HBO Max on Friday, Sept. 10
So far, we know very little about James Wan's next big directorial project, other than what we can see in this photo of star Annabelle Wallis (Annabelle). We're not sure what's going on back there, but we won't blame Wallis for not looking at whatever it is creeping out of her bedroom demon portal.
The Card Counter | In Theaters on Friday, Sept. 10
Paul Schrader’s upcoming release combines three of our favorite film ingredients: crime, casinos, and Oscar Isaac. Isaac plays a card shark who assists a young man (Tye Sheridan) seeking revenge against a military colonel (Willem Dafoe), and we’re looking forward to finally seeing how this dark thriller plays out, after its production was halted during the pandemic.
Cry Macho | In Theaters on Friday, Sept. 17
Variations of this Western, which trails a former rodeo star who is hired to reunite a young man in Mexico with his father in the US, have been in the Hollywood works since the 1970s. In fact, Clint Eastwood almost starred in a late 1980s version, but now, at age 91, Clint is starring and directing and, yep, riding a horse.
Dear Evan Hansen | In Theaters on Friday, Sept. 24
Ben Platt takes his Tony award-winning performance to the big screen during the musical-heavy second half of 2021. The story follows a high schooler with Social Anxiety Disorder who inserts himself into a fellow student's tragedy, with Oscar and Tony award-winning composers Benj Pasek and Justin Paul (La La Land) adding two new songs to the soundtrack.
The Tragedy of Macbeth | In Theaters on Friday, Sept. 24
Joel Coen's upcoming Shakespeare adaptation led by Oscar winners and Hollywood icons Denzel Washington and Frances McDormand is the type of film that could cause a streaming service overload. Happily, the unique take on the classic tragedy (shot entirely in black-and-white and filmed on sound stages) will get a theatrical run before landing at Apple TV+. This likely awards contender also stars Brendan Gleeson, Corey Hawkins, Harry Melling, and Moses Ingram.
Venom: Let There Be Carnage | In Theaters on Friday, Oct. 1
Although most critics panned Venom, audiences embraced the story of Eddie Brock, an investigative journalist who unwittingly becomes host to a super-powered alien symbiote, and made it one of the biggest box office hits of 2018. Personally, we couldn’t get enough of Tom Hardy's over-the-top performance and have been waiting for the inevitable sequel ever since. With Woody Harrelson as Carnage, this one is going to be a blast.
The Many Saints of Newark | In Theaters on Friday, Oct. 1
We still don't know whether this movie will focus on Dickie Moltisanti, a character who loomed large over all six seasons of "The Sopranos," but if there's a TV universe that could actually benefit from an prequel, it's the world that gave us Tony Soprano and James Gandolfini. Michael Gandolfini, James's son, plays young Tony, while the underrated Alessandro Nivola is in the undisclosed lead role (he has to be playing Dickie, right?).
The Addams Family 2 | In Theaters on Friday, Oct. 1
The Addams fam returns for a sequel, and this time out they, like so many families in the US, are taking a road trip to see some of the country's natural attractions. But the fact that they're cruising to the song "Ridin' Dirty" by Chamillionaire is, quite frankly, way subversive and super on-brand for America's favorite goth family.
There's Someone Inside Your House | Premieres on Netflix on Wednesday, Oct. 6
Stephanie Perkins' hit YA horror novel is being adapted for Netflix this year. Sydney Park ("The Walking Dead," "Pretty Little Liars: The Perfectionists") will play the lead role, and Patrick Brice (Creep, "Room 104") directs. We're anticipating a fun throwback vibe, as the book paid homage to '90s teen slasher films.
Hotel Transylvania: Transformania | Expected to Premiere in Fall 2021
Everything is upside down in the fourth and final installment of the Hotel Transylvania saga: Humans are turned into monsters, Drac and his monster pals are transformed into humans, annnnnnd ... Adam Sandler isn't voicing Drac for some reason. However! This farewell seems to be centered around Mavis, Johnny, and the newly human Drac Pack. Confused? Don't fear — your kids will help you understand what's going on.
No Time to Die | In Theaters on Friday, Oct. 8
Daniel Craig dons the James Bond persona one last time in the highly anticipated spy thriller, No Time to Die, directed by Cary Joji Fukunaga. Craig led the franchise as the notorious 007 for 15 years over five movies — the longest tenure held by an actor in the Bond movie franchise.
Halloween Kills | In Theaters on Friday, Oct. 15
David Gordon Green resurrected the Halloween franchise with 2018's Halloween, and is back for this much-anticipated sequel. That film's trio of multi-generational heroines (Jamie Lee Curtis, Judy Greer, and Andi Matichak) are back, as Halloween Kills picks up right where the previous film left off.
The Last Duel | In Theaters on Friday, Oct. 15
Are you ready for Matt Damon's British accent, in a story that's set in 14th-century France? Yup, we're a bit confused too! But we hear that Jodie Comer was the secret on-set weapon who helped zsuzh the accents for director Ridley's Scott's historical tale of a knight (Damon) and his squire (Adam Driver) who are ordered to fight to the death after the squire is accused of a heinous crime. We're also just remembering that Ridley Scott has two movies coming this year.
After We Fell | In Theaters on Tuesday, Oct. 19
The "After" series started as a wildly-successful One Direction fan fiction on Wattpad, morphed into a best-selling, four-volume novel series at Simon & Shuster, and now the third film in the movie series is finally landing in theaters sometime this fall. If you’re a fan of dark, tumultuous, relationships and emo boys with anger issues, you’ve probably already got this date marked on your calendar.
Dune | In Theaters and on HBO Max on Friday, Oct. 22
No matter which previously filmed version of Frank Herbert's "Dune" you prefer, Denis Villeneuve's Dune is poised to become the definitive adaptation. Originally slated for a November 2020 release, anticipation is off the charts, with an all-star cast that includes Timothée Chalamet, Zendaya, Jason Momoa, Oscar Isaac, and more. Let the spice flow!
The French Dispatch | In Theaters on Friday, Oct. 22
Wes Anderson looks to be pulling out all the ultra-stylized stops for The French Dispatch, and we are more than ready. We’re always charmed by his regulars (Frances McDormand, Bill Murray, Owen Wilson, etc.) but are positively giddy about new additions Timothée Chalamet, Benicio del Toro, and Elisabeth Moss as journalistic subjects of a fictional newspaper. This will premiere at Cannes in July ahead of its theatrical release this fall.
The Harder They Fall | In Select Theaters on Friday, Oct. 22; Premieres on Netflix on Wednesday, Nov. 3
It didn't take much convincing to add The Harder They Fall to our Watchlists. A western starring Idris Elba, Regina King, Lakeith Stanfield, and Zazie Beetz? Of course we're in! Director Jeymes Samuel is also reteaming with his Great Gatsby collaborator, Jay-Z on the music, so our fingers are crossed for a genre-busting breakout for the second-time director.
Jackass Forever | In Theaters on Friday, Oct. 22
With the title Jackass Forever, Johnny Knoxville, Steve-O, and company are really throwing down the gauntlet. But after 20 years of "Jackass," how long can these guys really expect to subject their bodies to rigors of inane stunts? Love it or hate it, we'll give them credit for commitment to their craft. Just be careful out there, fellas.
Antlers | In Theaters on Friday, Oct. 29
Based on the very creepy short story, "The Quiet Boy" by prolific TV writer Nick Antosca ("The Act"), Antlers has so many interesting people bringing this film to life that it might make us get over our primal fear of Wendigos and actually watch this one in the dark. With Scott Cooper (Crazy Heart) directing, David S. Goyer and Guillermo del Toro producing, and Keri Russell and Jesse Plemons as the lead, this is high up on our watchlist.
Last Night in Soho | In Theaters on Friday, Oct. 29
Mostly quiet since 2017's Baby Driver, director Edgar Wright (Shaun of the Dead, Scott Pilgrim vs. the World) is known for his hilariously quirky genre films. But his newest film, starring Anya Taylor-Joy and Matt Smith, is said to be a more straightforward horror-thriller inspired by British horror films like Don't Look Now.
Ron's Gone Wrong | Expected in Theaters in October 2021
While The Mitchells vs the Machines explored the apocalyptic possibilities of technology gone wrong, this upcoming CG-animated movie leans into the hilarious, high-tech mishaps in a world where every kid has a sleek, interactive device called a B-bot. Barney’s "Best Friend out of the Box" named Ron (voiced by Zach Galifianakis) has some technical issues, and with a stellar cast of voice actors including Jack Dylan Grazer, Olivia Colman, and Ed Helms, we’re ready to giggle at the glitchy chaos that ensues.
Eternals | In Theaters on Friday, Nov. 5
Chloé Zhao directs the 26th film in the MCU which introduces a new team of heroes, an immortal alien race called the Eternals, and a new threat to the world as we know it — the Deviants. The ensemble cast includes Angelina Jolie, Kumail Nanjiani, Salma Hayek, and "Game of Thrones" alums Kit Harington and Richard Madden.
Red Notice | Premieres on Netflix on Friday, Nov. 12
One of the more high-profile releases in Netflix's lengthy 2021 film slate, Red Notice features Dwayne Johnson as an FBI profiler tasked with tracking two cons (Ryan Reynolds and Gal Gadot). It looks to be as packed with witty one-liners as it is major action scenes, and with a massive rumored budget, we have high hopes for this one.
tick, tick...Boom | In Select Theaters on Friday, Nov. 12, Premieres on Netflix on Friday, Nov. 19
Have you been waiting for the next marquee performance by Andrew Garfield? Same here. And we're touched to see Lin-Manuel Miranda use his clout to help bring the autobiographical musical by dearly departed composer/playwright Jonathan Larson to an even wider audience, in what will serve as Miranda's directorial debut.
The Power of the Dog | In Select Theaters on Wednesday, Nov. 17; Premieres on Netflix on Wednesday, Dec. 1
After binging Season 2 of "Fargo," you can sign us up for anything involving real-life power couple Jesse Plemons and Kirsten Dunst, but add Benedict Cumberbatch and Thomasin McKenzie to the mix and it's truly locked in. Set to debut at Venice Film Festival later this year, this adaptation depicting two brothers pitted against each other on a Montana ranch in the 1920s comes from director Jane Campion, who took home an Oscar for Best Screenplay for 1994's The Piano.
Encanto | Expected to Premiere on Disney Plus on Wednesday, Nov. 24
If, like us, you happily had "How Far I’ll Go" playing on loop in your brain after seeing Moana, expect a few more irresistible earworms from Disney’s upcoming Encanto. The score, composed entirely by Lin-Manuel Miranda, promises eight new songs to accompany the animated tale of the Madrigal family, who live a magical life in a colorful Colombian mountain town. Stephanie Beatriz (In The Heights) voices Mirabel, the sole family member without a unique gift or talent...or so she thinks.
House of Gucci | In Theaters on Wednesday, Nov. 24
Listen, we're still talking about how good Lady Gaga was in A Star Is Born, so we're barely able to process the thought of her playing socialite and convicted murderer, Patrizia Reggiani. If you're not fully immersed in the story of Reggiani's marriage to Maurizio Gucci, the former head of the fashion label that bears his family name, Ridley Scott's film will give you all the glamorous and deadly details. And if the on-set photos of Gaga and Adam Driver (who plays Maurizio) were any indication of public interest in the movie, expect exaggerated reports on their friendship as they prepare to potentially walk red carpets together in late 2021.
Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City | Expected in Theaters on Wednesday, Nov. 24
The long-running Resident Evil franchise is getting both a reboot and an origin story with the upcoming survival horror film Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City. Director Johannes Roberts looks to be going back to the videogame's roots for this one, setting the film in both Spencer Mansion (the creepy setting for the first game) and the Raccoon Police Department which players explored in the second. Expect this one to be dark, terrifying and full of jump-scares. The cast includes Robbie Amell, Tom Hopper, Hannah John-Kamen, Donal Logue, and more.
Mothering Sunday | Expected in Theaters in 2021
Plenty of onscreen royals are presiding over this post-World War I drama from Eva Husson, starring Colin Firth as well as "The Crown" favorites Olivia Colman and Josh O'Connor. Odessa Young plays a maid carrying on a secret romance with her employer's neighbor's son (O'Connor) in this adaptation of Graham Swift's novella, which is slated to premiere at Cannes this year.
Nightmare Alley | In Theaters on Friday, Dec. 3
Guillermo del Toro has brought together many of his key crew members who helped form The Shape of Water into an Oscar winner and box-office hit. His take on "Nightmare Alley," author William Gresham’s best-known novel that was first brought to the big screen back in 1947, will keep the basic story structure, with Bradley Cooper playing the carny with a knack for grooming manipulative people, and Cate Blanchett as the psychiatrist who is several steps ahead of his short cons.
Don't Look Up | In Theaters on Friday, Dec. 10; Premieres on Netflix on Friday, Dec. 24
Writer/Director Adam McKay (The Big Short, Step Brothers) heads up this Netflix black comedy about two low-level astronomers who must go on a giant media tour to warn mankind of an approaching comet that will destroy planet Earth. The cast alone has got us excited, with Leonardo DiCaprio and Jennifer Lawrence in the leads, and a supporting cast which includes Chris Evans, Cate Blanchett, Meryl Streep, Timothée Chalamet, Mark Rylance, Ron Perlman, and more.
West Side Story | In Theaters on Friday, Dec. 10
All singing! All dancing! All ... Steven Spielberg! We miss Spielberg in big, bold, broad filmmaker form, and the themes of West Side Story are as relevant today as they were in the 1950s. Plus, we can't wait to see YouTuber Rachel Zegler in her much-deserved movie debut.
Spider-Man: No Way Home | In Theaters on Friday, Dec. 17
It's hard to keep up with all the speculation surrounding the third Tom Holland Spider-Man film, but we know some franchise veterans are reprising roles from earlier films, including Alfred Molina as Doctor Octopus and Jamie Foxx as Electro. Benedict Cumberbatch will also join as Doctor Strange, but the juiciest rumors involve a return of former Peter Parkers Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield, à la Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse.
The Matrix Resurrections | In Theaters and on HBO Max on Wednesday, Dec. 22
We’re not sure where the story will pick up from where we last left off, but with Keanu Reeves, Carrie-Anne Moss and Jada Pinkett Smith reprising their roles, Lana Wachowski back in the director’s chair, and a cast that includes Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Priyanka Chopra, Jonathan Groff, and Neil Patrick Harris we’re up for absolutely anything. Right now, we’re just hoping this doesn’t get pushed to 2022.
The King's Man | In Theaters on Wednesday, Dec. 22
Writer-director Matthew Vaughn turns back time on his Kingsman franchise to look at what spy life was like before Eggsy and Harry. Set during WWI, this prequel tale will be a slightly more serious affair with major-scale action sequences and an epic flair, reminiscent of classics such as Lawrence of Arabia.
Sherlock Holmes 3 | Expected in Theaters and on HBO Max on Wednesday, Dec. 22
After a decade-long hiatus we’re finally getting a third installment of Sherlock Holmes. Dexter Fletcher (Rocketman) is taking over directing duties from Guy Ritchie on the third film, but with no trailer, photos, or plot, and a tentative release date of Dec. 22, all we have is our excitement of Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law rekindling their grumpy bromance as Holmes and Watson, solving crimes, and going on what will undoubtedly be an action-filled adventure.
Sing 2 | In Theaters on Wednesday, Dec. 22
Universal hit it big with 2016's Sing, thanks to a winning formula of big names, a soundtrack full of crowd-pleasing hits, and of course, singing animals. Looking for a repeat, Sing 2 adds Pharrell Williams, Bono, and Halsey to join returning cast members Matthew McConaughey, Reese Witherspoon, Scarlett Johansson, and Taron Egerton.