11th Jan2016

Which Movie Releases Should You Keep an Eye on in 2016?

by Reece Jones

It’s likely that the ‘big’ films of 2016, like 2015, will largely comprise of the franchise sagas, sequels and spin-off titles that prove box office winners with some big titles in the pipeline. That said, there are some interesting ‘stand alone’ films and animations to look out for too as we eagerly await the year’s silver screen offerings.

DC Comics’ answer to Marvel

The ‘Marvel Cinematic Universe’ series provides hit after hit for the Disney subsidiary Marvel Studios, but its old comic rival DC is about to compete with a potentially huge release. Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice stars two popular superheroes, and is the first of several titles scheduled by DC over the coming years. Shortly after ‘Batman v Superman’ hits the screens, Marvel’s next release will be in cinemas – Captain America: Civil War – is predicted to possibly be its biggest film yet. If it achieves its expectations it’ll gross over $1.5 billion. The battle of the superheroes is well and truly underway in 2016.

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Harry Potter and Batman ride to the rescue for Warner Bros.

While Disney and Universal continue to benefit from smash hit franchises, Warner Bros. is less fortunate as its long-running cinematic sagas have mostly come to an end and the replacements haven’t hit particularly heady heights. Relief comes in the form of the Harry Potter spin-off Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. The original series generated more than $9 billion in box office and home entertainment sales, so this new release – the first written by Harry Potter creator J.K. Rowling herself - could even out perform the Marvel and DC titles discussed above. Warner Bros. may have another hit on its hands in 2016 when Suicide Squad returns hugely popular superhero Batman to the screens.

Animations

Disney and Pixar’s Finding Dory is a sequel to the hugely popular Finding Nemo – a film that has taken the equivalent of $1.2 billion in today’s money. If Finding Dory hits similar heights it could challenge Frozen for its crown of highest grossing animated film. Disney is likely to enjoy another part-animated hit with a new version of the classic The Jungle Book featuring cutting edge CGI.

Old franchises resurrected

The huge success of Jurassic World showed that a 20-plus year old franchise can endure. Some 20 years after the original film treated audiences to the spectacular obliteration of famous landmarks and cities, Independence Day: Resurgence brings an epic scale disaster movie to cinemas.

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Star Wars – enough said?

Star Wars: The Force Awakens is busy breaking records and came close to being the highest grossing film in 2015 even though it was in cinemas barely a fortnight before 2016 rolled round, so Rogue One: A Star Wars Story should be a huge hit. It’s a spin-off as opposed to another chapter in the hugely successful Disney-owned series, but this won’t matter to fans – the words ‘Star’ and ‘Wars’ is enough to more or less ensure huge box office success.

Tarantino goes cowboy

Popular film maker Quentin Tarantino turns his attention to the western genre with The Hateful Eight. Due to its format, some cinema chains are not showing it including Cineworld. A Tarantino release is usually much anticipated and doubtless his army of fans will be out in force.

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2016 – a big film year

There are various other titles of significance: Disney’s Alice Through The Looking Glass will look to literally cash in on the success of Tim Burton’s original, and two films based on games – namely Warcraft and Angry Birds – will show whether or not popular games played on computers, tablets and mobile phones can translate to box office success.
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