Friday, January 1, 2021

5 of the Most Anticipated Movies of 2021!

Coming 2 America (March 5th) -

The continued cultural impact of the 1988 Eddie Murphy vehicle Coming to America is hard to overstate: hundreds of TikTok creators have replicated Murphy joyfully screaming profanities out his Queens fire escape, while the fictional fast food joint McDowell’s has popped up sporadically across the country. In this long-awaited sequel, Akeem (Murphy) & Semmi (Arsenio Hall) depart from their Zamunda palace & travel across the Atlantic once again after Akeem discovers he has a long-lost son.

Black Widow (May 7th) -
Before she became an Avenger, Natasha Romanov’s work as a Russian spy landed her in hot water with some bad people. Scarlett Johansson reprises her role as Black Widow for an origin story directed by Cate Shortland that casts Florence Pugh, Rachel Weisz and David Harbour as the superhero’s equally lethal “family.” Set after the events of Captain America: Civil War, this is the first installment in Phase Four of the Marvel Cinematic Universe and the franchise’s 24th film overall. 
 Fast & Furious 9 (May 28th) -
If the barren landscape of 2020 films didn’t provide you with enough big-budget explosions and car chases, then the ninth film in the long-running Fast and Furious franchise should satisfy that need for speed. Though the series has always vaulted the idea of “family,” this film, which brings back most of the expected regulars including director Justin Lin, plans to expand on that notion, with Dom (Vin Diesel) and Letty’s (Michelle Rodriguez) son and the new threat of Dom’s brother, played by John Cena. The family’s not the only thing getting bigger, as the outrageous action of F9 seems poised to outdo everything that came before it.
Top Gun: Maverick (July 2nd) -

After waiting 34 years for a sequel to Top Gun, it must have really cooled the jets of high-flying fans to have the movie pushed into 2021. But come July 2021, those craving a return to the dogfighting world of Maverick and Ice Man will get their chance to experience the Joseph Kosinski-directed film. Starring Miles Teller, Jennifer Connelly and Jon Hamm, the movie will also feature Tom Cruise and Val Kilmer reprising their classic roles. Kelly McGillis, who played Charlotte “Charlie” Blackwood in the original movie says she was not asked to return for Top Gun: Maverick.

Space Jam: A New Legacy (July 16th) -

Lebron James has been drawing comparisons to Michael Jordan since he entered the NBA, and that dialogue has only intensified since James won his fourth NBA title in October. James may or may not be a better basketball player than Jordan, but by taking the lead role in the sequel to Space Jam, James has unequivocally embraced his position as Jordan’s cultural heir. But James has also gone farther in Hollywood than Jordan ever did: his producing credits include Self Made: Inspired by the Life of Madam C.J. Walker and Becoming, and he’s also proved his surprisingly agile comedic abilities in Trainwreck and Smallfoot. In the film, James ditches his Lakers teammates for the Looney Tunes gang. Don Cheadle and basketball stars like Chris Paul and Diana Taurasi are also set to appear.

Gemma Arterton Says “There Was So Much Wrong” With "Quantum Of Solace" Bond Woman Character

Black Narcissus and How to Build a Girl actress Gemma Arterton has spoken out about her time as a Bond girl in Quantum of Solace. 

In a recent interview with the Sun, Arterton both defended and criticized her role as the 2008 Bond film’s Strawberry Fields. In Quantum of Solace, British Secret Service agent Strawberry Fields attempts to thwart James Bond (Daniel Craig) from accomplishing his mission, but loses guard to his suave personality and charm. Arterton’s character ultimately becomes the target of Bond’s enemies and dies smothered in crude oil.

Arterton, who has also appeared in Prince of Persia: Sands of Time and Clash of the Titans, said she took the Bond role out of much needed exposure and income.

“At the beginning of my career, I was poor as a church mouse and I was happy just to be able to work and earn a living,” she said.

However, despite taking on the role to simply stay afloat, Arterton revealed that she received criticism for her part and continues to receive flak for her Quantum of Solace character.

Disapproval for Quantum of Solace’s Strawberry Fields, however, also stems from Arterton herself.  In the height of the #MeToo movement, the British actress rewrote Strawberry Field’s arc to call out the sexism originally embedded in the role. She further explained to the Sun what she would have changed about Strawberry’s time with Bond.

“As I got older I realized there was so much wrong with Bond women. Strawberry should have just said no, really, and worn flat shoes,” she said.

The George Clooney Directed "The Midnight Sky" is on Course to Become One of Netflix’s Most Watched Films

This year especially, film holiday bragging rights ought to belong to the streamers, as numerous big pictures fill the holiday corridor gap emptied by the pandemic. Trouble is, most of them resist transparency, even when the news is good. I’m trying to coax out information on a couple of films, but here’s some news we've got on one of the big successes. The George Clooney-directed sci-fi thriller The Midnight Sky is well on its way to becoming one of the biggest-ever films on Netflix — with a projected 72 million households on course to watch the film in the first 4 weeks. Netflix has confirmed that along with the fact that the success is global: The Midnight Sky reached the #1 spot overall in 77 countries; and has been in the Top 10 in 93 countries – from Turkey to Argentina, Germany and Iceland (where part of the movie was shot).

In addition, the theatrical release for The Midnight Sky was Netflix’s largest of the year. While that needs to be qualified in light of how the Covid pandemic walloped theatrical, The Midnight Sky played in more than 800 locations in 16 countries including US, the UK, Brazil, Australia, Spain & Japan.

There is validation here of the Netflix Films program built under the leadership of Scott Stuber, who in three years has brought in talent he had relationships with when he was a movie executive and producer. When he came in, most big stars weren’t doing streamer films but that line in the sand is long gone. Netflix began 2020 with the Chris Hemsworth-starrer Extraction, which became the streamer’s most viewed film ever and has a sequel in the works. The year ends with the David Fincher-directed Mank, the Aaron Sorkin-directed The Trial of the Chicago 7 and Midnight Sky.  Netflix starts 2021 with its biggest ever movie production, the Joe & Anthony Russo-directed espionage thriller The Gray Man set to start early next year in Long Beach with Ryan Gosling and Chris Evans starring.

Said Clooney, who directed, stars in and produced The Midnight Sky: “It has been a great experience working with Netflix. At a time when no one gets to go to the theater, it is an honor to be able to have a film people have responded to in such a big way, and be able to acknowledge it.”

Said Netflix’s Stuber: “George made a film that captures humanity and that’s very insightful to our times. He brought a life and a soul to The Midnight Sky – it’s why this film is resonating with so many. What an incredible way to end the year and to continue my long-standing relationship with George and Grant Heslov.”