ET's 2011 Movie Preview
By DAVID WEINER
December 31, 2010
A-list stars, highly anticipated sequels and a new batch of superheroes will ring in the coming year, and we have a complete preview of all things comedy, drama, action and adventure in 2011!
January finds Gwyneth Paltrow as a country singer on the road to redemption in 'Country Strong' (Jan. 7), while Nicolas Cage heads back to the 14th century to save an innocent soul in 'Season of the Witch' (Jan. 7). Director Ron Howard returns to comedy with Vince Vaughn and Kevin James facing marital infidelity in 'The Dilemma' (Jan. 14), and Seth Rogen teams up with Cameron Diaz and Jay Chou (as his sidekick Kato) to fight crime in the action-packed 'The Green Hornet' (Jan. 14). Natalie Portman, hot off 'Black Swan,' tries on a romantic "friends with benefits" comedy with Ashton Kutcher in 'No Strings Attached' (Jan. 21), Jason Statham is a master assassin in the action-thriller 'The Mechanic' (Jan. 28), and Anthony Hopkins is an exorcism master teaching his craft in 'The Rite' (Jan. 28), inspired by true events.
February finds Leighton Meester and Minka Kelley as college coeds who clash in 'The Roommate' (February 4), but love is in the air between 'Gnomeo & Juliet' (Feb. 11), an animated romp featuring the vocal talents of James McAvoy and Emily Blunt. 'Just Go With It' (Feb. 11) has Adam Sandler falling for supermodel Brooklyn Decker and needing Jennifer Aniston's help to pull it off, and Bieber Fever hits a fever pitch with the 3D release of his biopic/concert film 'Justin Bieber: Never Say Never' (Feb. 11). Channing Tatum and Jamie Bell are master and slave who find the tables turned in the epic Roman adventure 'The Eagle' (Feb. 11). Alex Pettyfer is the new kid in school who falls for "Glee" cheerleader Diana Agron -- and also happens to be an alien fugitive -- in the action-packed 'I Am Number Four' (Feb. 18), and Liam Neeson returns to action-hero territory as a man who awakens from a coma to find his identity stolen in 'Unknown' (Feb. 18). Plus, Nicolas Cage breaks out of hell to 'Drive Angry' (Feb. 25) and find redemption in his supernatural 3D crash-fest, and Hayden Christensen, John Leguizamo and Thandie Newton fear the dark in the apocalyptic thriller 'Vanishing on 7th Street' (Feb. 18).
In March, Johnny Depp re-teams with his 'Pirates of the Caribbean' director Gore Verbinski as 'Rango' (March 4), a CGI-animated chameleon in a Wild West adventure. Topher Grace and Anna Faris are totally '80s in the coming-of-age comedy 'Take Me Home Tonight' (March 4), and Matt Damon is a politician who temps fate when 'The Adjustment Bureau' (March 4) tells him he cannot fall in love with Emily Blunt. Aaron Eckhart and Michelle Rodriguez are marines that take on hostile extraterrestrials in 'Battle: Los Angeles' (March 11), but the aliens in the 3D CGI-animated 'Mars Needs Moms' (March 11) are more friendly -- they just abduct Earth moms to raise their crazy Martian kids. Amanda Seyfried runs into the big bad werewolf in 'Red Riding Hood' (March 11), and Vanessa Hudgens experiences a 'Beastly' (March 18) of a different sort (Alex Pettyfer) in a modern-day retelling of Beauty and the Beast. Bradley Cooper's life takes off when he discovers a wonder drug in 'Limitless' (March 18), and Matthew McConaughey is a lawyer who conducts business from the back of his town car who defends Beverly Hills playboy Ryan Phillippe in the dramatic 'The Lincoln Lawyer' (March 18). All eyes will be on Mel Gibson when he returns to the big screen as an exec who has a breakdown and attempts to recover with the help of a hand puppet in Jodie Foster's 'The Beaver' (March 23), and director Zack Snyder brings action and fantasy to an institution in 'Sucker Punch' (March 25), as Emily Browning uses her vivid imagination to attempt an escape.
In April, Russell Brand lends his voice to the Easter Bunny in the live-action/CGI-animated hybrid 'Hop' (April 1), and then takes on the wealthy playboy 'Arthur' (April 8) alongside Helen Mirren in a remake of the '80s comedy classic. Anne Hathaway and Jesse Eisenberg are two domestic macaws caught up in a South American adventure in the animated 'Rio' (April 8), and Natalie Portman teams up with James Franco and Danny McBride in the Middles Ages comedy 'Your Highness' (April 8). Jake Gyllenhaal plays a soldier placed in the body of another man who must catch the bomber of a commuter train in the sci-fi thriller 'Source Code' (April 15), Courteney Cox, Neve Campbell and David Arquette reunite for director Wes Craven's scary 'Scream 4' (April 15), and the drama 'Water for Elephants' (April 15) casts Robert Pattinson as a circus worker with eyes for the married Reese Witherspoon.
Moviegoers can once again sail the seven seas in May when Johnny Depp searches for the Fountain of Youth with Penelope Cruz in 'Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides' (May 20). 'Jumping the Broom' (May 6) has two African-American families at odds at a Martha's Vineyard wedding, Chris Hemsworth takes on the comic book role of the mighty 'Thor' (May 6), cast down to Earth opposite Natalie Portman, and skadoosh! Jack Black once again embodies the portly 'Kung Fu Panda 2' (May 27), with the voices of Angelina Jolie and Jackie Chan by his side. Get ready for more obscene laughter in 'The Hangover Part II' (May 26) as Bradley Cooper, Zach Galifianakis, Ed Helms and Justin Bartha head to Thailand for more trouble, Paul Bettany roams the apocalyptic landscape as a 'Priest' (May 13) who battles vampires, and Brad Pitt is the '50s father to a boy who loses his innocence in the Terrence Malick drama 'The Tree of Life' (May 27), also starring Sean Penn.
June goes green with the arrival of Ryan Reynolds as 'Green Lantern' (June 17), an Earth man enlisted to help protect the galaxy as part of an elite corps, and Professor X (James McAvoy) and Magneto (Michael Fassbender) meet for the first time in the back-to-basics 'X-Men: First Class' (June 3). Disney-Pixar's 'Cars 2' (June 24) vrooms back around the track, this time for a globetrotting race and a taste of espionage with the voice of Michael Caine, 'Rise of the Apes' (June 24) features James Franco as a scientist whose genetic engineering experiments will lead to a planet of the apes, and the secrets of J.J. Abrams' 'Super 8' (June 10) will finally be revealed.
The July Fourth weekend explodes with the arrival of 'Transformers: Dark of the Moon' (July 1), thrusting Shia LaBeouf back in the middle of more giant robot chaos, courtesy of director Michael Bay. Kevin James starts talking to the animals in the creature comedy 'The Zookeeper' (July 8), featuring the voices of Adam Sandler, Sylvester Stallone and Cher as zoo animals, and the boy wizard Harry Potter (Daniel Radcliffe) finally meets his destiny with Voldemort (Ralph Fiennes) in the 3D conclusion 'Harry Potter and the Deathy Hallows - Part 2' (July 15). 'Captain America: The First Avenger' (July 22) casts Chris Evans as the classic Marvel Comics character, and dust meets stardust as Daniel Craig and Harrison Ford rustle up otherworldly enemies in 'Cowboys & Aliens' (July 29).
In August, 'The Smurfs' (Aug. 3) take Manhattan in a live-action/CGI-animated adventure, "Stargate: Atlantis" star Jason Momoa wields Schwarzenegger's sword as the new 'Conan the Barbarian' (August 19), and Colin Farrell sinks his teeth into the vampire next door creature-feature remake 'Fright Night' (Aug. 19), also starring Anton Yelchin and Christopher Mintz-Plasse. Antonio Banderas and Jessica Alba must stop a time-stopping villain in 'Spy Kids 4: All the Time in the World' (Aug. 19), and a new set of people must outwit death when they survive a suspension bridge tragedy in 'Final Destination 5' (Aug. 26).
In September, Brad Pitt plays Oakland A's general manager Billy Beane, trying to assemble a team on a budget in 'Moneyball' (Sept. 23). In the thriller 'Abduction' (Sept. 23), Taylor Lautner sets out to uncover the truth when he finds his baby photo on a missing persons website. James Marsden and Kate Bosworth star in a remake of the gritty revenge classic 'Straw Dogs' (Sept. 16), 'Drive' (Sept. 16) casts Ryan Gosling opposite Carey Mulligan as a Hollywood stunt performer on the run after a heist gone wrong, and Daniel Craig, Rachel Weisz and Naomi Watts discover a brutal murder occurred in their 'Dream House' (Sept. 30), directed by Jim Sheridan.
October finds Hugh Jackman managing real-life rock-'em-sock-'em robots in the futuristic 'Real Steel' (Oct. 7), Rowan Atkinson returns as the bumbling superspy 'Johnny English Reborn' (Oct. 7), and Julianne Hough and Kenny Wormald star in an updated version of the '80s dance classic 'Footloose' (Oct. 14). Orlando Bloom once again picks up a sword in 'The Three Musketeers' (Oct. 14) opposite Milla Jovovich in 3D, Mary Elizabeth Winstead battles 'The Thing' (Oct. 14) in the Antarctic tundra, ghosts return in 'Paranormal Activity 3' (Oct. 21), and Matt Damon re-teams with director Steven Soderbergh to battle an outbreak in the thriller 'Contagion' (Oct. 21).
Robert Pattinson, Kristen Stewart and Taylor Lautner make November supernatural when 'The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 1' (Nov. 18) begins to wrap up the vamps vs. werewolves series, Antonio Banderas gets his own animated 'Shrek' spinoff with 'Puss in Boots' (Nov. 4), and Ben Stiller teams up with Eddie Murphy to get revenge against the head of a Ponzi scheme in the crime comedy 'Tower Heist' (Nov. 4). Mickey Rourke and Kellan Lutz star in the 'Clash of the Titans'-inspired Greek myth fantasy 'Immortals' (Nov. 11), Adam Sandler and Katie Holmes play twins 'Jack and Jill' (Nov. 11) opposite Al Pacino, 'Happy Feet 2' (Nov. 18) dances its way back into theaters in 3D with the voice of Elijah Wood, and 'The Muppets' (Nov. 23) return with the help of funnyman Jason Segel and his friends.
And in December, director Garry Marshall assembles another all-star cast to ring in 'New Year's Eve' (Dec. 9), and director Martin Scorsese goes the 3D route with the whimsical tale 'Hugo Cabret' (Dec. 9), featuring Jude Law, Ben Kingsley and Chloe Moretz. Tom Cruise climbs to new heights in the spy thriller 'Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol' (Dec. 16), Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law face their toughest adversary, Professor Moriarty (Jared Harris), in 'Sherlock Holmes 2' (Dec. 16), and 'The Social Network' director David Fincher enters remake territory with Daniel Craig and Rooney Mara as 'The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.' Craig also stars in Steven Spielberg's imaginative take 'The Adventures of Tintin: Secret of the Unicorn' (Dec. 23), based on the classic French comic strip character, while Matt Damon and Thomas Haden Church prepare to re-open a zoo in director Cameron Crowe's drama 'We Bought a Zoo' (Dec. 23).
Of course, all dates and titles are subject to change as the year progresses. Which movies are you looking forward to the most?
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