Can any year top 2012's spectacular superhero movie releases? A few months ago, it seemed like the super trio of The Avengers, The Dark Knight Rises, and The Amazing Spider-Man could never be equalled, let alone topped, but now I'm not so sure. I think 2013's movie line-up might be just as impressive as last year's.
All Superheroes Must Die
Iron Man 3
Man of Steel
Thor:The Dark World
There are four major movies on the schedule that boast A-list stars, talented directors, and great early buzz. All four of the flicks - Iron Man 3, Man of Steel, The Wolverine, and Thor: The Dark World, will (by all indications) continue the superhero box office dominance in 2013. The movies also play a critical role in the long-range plans that each studio has in terms of sequels and related projects (more on that below). In 2013, we'll also see the sequel to 2010's controversial, ultra-violent Kick-Ass and its motley crew of masked vigilantes.
Check out this list of superhero movies and circle those opening dates on your calendar. Opening dates are for the USA.
Opening: January 4, 2013
Directed by: Jason Trost
Starring: James Remar, Lucas Till, and Jason Trost
Starting off the new year, All Superheroes Must Die is a low-budget film from Image Entertainment. I don't know much about this flick beyond the synopsis and trailer, but it looks interesting. It's another movie that falls under the "superheroes deconstructed" sub-genre, along with Kick-Ass and Super. It'll have a very limited release in theaters, so look for it on disc.
Note: The previous title of this film was "Versus".
|image source: Image Entertainment|
Directed by: Shane Black
Starring: Robert Downey Jr., Don Cheadle, Ben Kingsley, and Gwyneth Paltrow
Iron Man 3 is a critical movie for Marvel Studios because it'll be the first post-Avengers movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. A slip-up by Marvel in terms of quality could damage the huge potential of the sequel to 2012's The Avengers, which is set to arrive in 2015. The movie will also gauge whether or not Marvel can continually wow audiences with new visual effects. The Avengers had so many eye-popping effects, it'll be interesting to see what new, futuristic Stark tech the filmmakers come up with in Iron Man 3.
|image source: Iron Man 3|
Synopsis: Marvel Studios’ Iron Man 3 pits brash-but-brilliant industrialist Tony Stark/Iron Man against an enemy whose reach knows no bounds. When Stark finds his personal world destroyed at his enemy's hands, he embarks on a harrowing quest to find those responsible. This journey, at every turn, will test his mettle. With his back against the wall, Stark is left to survive by his own devices, relying on his ingenuity and instincts to protect those closest to him. As he fights his way back, Stark discovers the answer to the question that has secretly haunted him: does the man make the suit or does the suit make the man? - Disney/Marvel Studios
Directed by: Zack Snyder
Starring: Henry Cavill, Kevin Costner, Diane Lane, Amy Adams, and Michael Shannon
Without a doubt, Man of Steel is the most highly anticipated superhero movie of 2013. The movie has a visionary director in Zack Snyder, and boasts a cast with no less than seven actors who either have won an Oscar or have been nominated for one. Oh yeah, and it also has a guy named Christopher Nolan helping to guide the entire project. Warner Bros. has the entire future of their DC Comics movie universe riding on the success or failure of this movie. Plans are already in the works for a Justice League movie, which of course would star Man of Steel's Henry Cavill. If this Superman re-boot isn't a world-wide hit, it would seriously jeopardize those plans.
Trivia: Man of Steel will open in the same month of the 75th anniversary of Superman's first appearance in comic books - June 1938.
|image source: Man of Steel|
From Warner Bros. Pictures and Legendary Pictures comes “Man of Steel,”TM starring Henry Cavill in the role of Clark Kent/Kal-El under the direction of Zack Snyder.
A young boy learns that he has extraordinary powers and is not of this Earth. As a young man, he journeys to discover where he came from and what he was sent here to do. But the hero in him must emerge if he is to save the world from annihilation and become the symbol of hope for all mankind.
The film also stars four-time Oscar® nominee Amy Adams (“The Master”), Oscar® nominee Michael Shannon (“Revolutionary Road”), Academy Award® winner Kevin Costner (“Dances with Wolves”), Oscar® nominee Diane Lane - via Warner Bros.
Directed by: James Mangold
Starring: Hugh Jackman, Will Yun Lee, Hiroyuki Sanada, and Jessica Biel
From what I've heard about The Wolverine so far, it sounds like it'll be very different from any other superhero movie. In interviews, director James Mangold and star Hugh Jackman have talked about how the action will be unlike anything we've seen in a X-Men film. The Wolverine is also different in that it's a stand-alone story, meaning it has no connection to 2009's X-Men Origins: Wolverine. The movie is based on a famous comic book story in which Wolverine travels to Japan and gets involved with a powerful organized crime family.
|image source: The Wolverine|
Synopsis: Based on the celebrated comic book arc, this epic action-adventure takes Wolverine, the most iconic character of the X-Men universe, to modern day Japan. Out of his depth in an unknown world he faces his ultimate nemesis in a life-or-death battle that will leave him forever changed. Vulnerable for the first time and pushed to his physical and emotional limits, he confronts not only lethal samurai steel but also his inner struggle against his own immortality, emerging more powerful than we have ever seen him before. - 20th Century Fox
Opening date: August 16, 2013
Directed by: Jeff Wadlow
Starring: Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Chloë Grace Moretz, Jim Carrey, Christopher Mintz-Plasse
Prepare yourself for the bloody sequel to 2010's Kick-Ass - now with even more do-it-yourself superheroes and villains. Aaron Taylor-Johnson returns as Dave Lizewski/Kick-Ass, along withChloë Grace Moretz as Mindy Macready/Hit-Girl, and joining the fray this time is Jim Carrey as Colonel Stars and Stripes. It's safe to say Kick-Ass 2 will be another gore-splattered, F-bomb-filled spectacle that could only come from the mind of comic book writer Mark Millar. This time around, Jeff Wadlow is directing the mayhem - taking over for Matthew Vaughn, who's helming the soon-to-be epic, X-Men: Days of Future Past.
|image source: Universal|
Synopsis: Kick-Ass, Hit Girl and Red Mist return for the follow-up to 2010’s irreverent global hit: ‘Kick-Ass 2.’ After Kick-Ass’ (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) insane bravery inspires a new wave of self-made masked crusaders, led by the badass Colonel Stars and Stripes (Jim Carrey), our hero joins them on patrol. When these amateur superheroes are hunted down by Red Mist (Christopher Mintz-Plasse)—reborn as The Mother F%&*^r—only the blade-wielding Hit Girl (Chloë Grace Moretz) can prevent their annihilation. When we last saw junior assassin Hit Girl and young vigilante Kick-Ass, they were trying to live as normal teenagers Mindy and Dave. With graduation looming and uncertain what to do, Dave decides to start the world’s first superhero team with Mindy.
Opening date: November 8, 2013
Unfortunately, when Mindy is busted for sneaking out as Hit Girl, she’s forced to retire—leaving her to navigate the terrifying world of high-school mean girls on her own. With no one left to turn to, Dave joins forces with Justice Forever, run by a born-again ex-mobster named Colonel Stars and Stripes. Just as they start to make a real difference on the streets, the world’s first super villain, The Mother F%&*^r, assembles his own evil league and puts a plan in motion to make Kick-Ass and Hit Girl pay for what they did to his dad. But there’s only one problem with his scheme: If you mess with one member of Justice Forever, you mess with them all. - Universal
Warning - This trailer contains violence and lots, and lots of profanity.
Warning - This trailer contains violence and lots, and lots of profanity.
Directed by: Alan Taylor
Starring: Chris Hemsworth, Natalie Portman, Tom Hiddleston, Stellan Skarsgård, Idris Elba, Christopher Eccleston, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, aKat Dennings, Ray Stevenson, Zachary Levi, Tadanobu Asano and Jaimie Alexander with Rene Russo and Anthony Hopkins
Expect to see a grittier, grungier Asgard than you did in 2011's Thor, thanks to director Alan Taylor, who was also responsible for HBO's Game of Thrones. Most of the cast from Thor will return, including Tom Hiddleston as Loki, and Anthony Hopkins as Odin. Like Iron Man 3, Thor: The Dark World is part of Marvel Studios' Phase 2, which will thunder to a conclusion in 2015's The Avengers 2.
|unofficial fan-made collage|
Synopsis: Marvel's "Thor: The Dark World" continues the big-screen adventures of Thor, the Mighty Avenger, as he battles to save Earth and all the Nine Realms from a shadowy enemy that predates the universe itself. In the aftermath of Marvel's "Thor" and "Marvel's The Avengers," Thor fights to restore order across the cosmos...but an ancient race led by the vengeful Malekith returns to plunge the universe back into darkness. Faced with an enemy that even Odin and Asgard cannot withstand, Thor must embark on his most perilous and personal journey yet, one that will reunite him with Jane Foster and force him to sacrifice everything to save us all. - Disney/Marvel Studios