2014 has been a good year for cinema. This year's Oscars were some of the most anticipated in history - would Leo, or wouldn't he? - and box office smashes like Guardians of the Galaxy, X-Men: Days of Future Past and Gone Girl kept everyone well provided for in terms of options for mid-week movie nights.
Movie buffs will rejoice to know that 2015 is set to be another big year for blockbuster movies. Superheroes, con men, evil spirits, and eroticism are all on offer in these highly anticipated films to be released next year. Big stars and even bigger budgets will not be spared to attract audiences to theatres across the globe in 2015.
We dare you to not watch every single trailer for these seriously promising movies after reading this list.
10 The Woman in Black: Angel of Death
The first Woman in Black movie released in 2012, starring Harry Potter actor Daniel Radcliffe, was a critical and box-office hit — it took in over $127 million with a budget of only $15 million. By common standards, it's a typical horror story: a house is haunted by an evil presence that forces the inhabitants to do terrible things.
Similarly, the anticipated sequel tells the story of children who awaken the evil spirit of a woman when they take residence in the Eel Marsh House after escaping WWII. However, Radcliffe will not be reprising his role due to the fate of his character in the first film. Tom Hopper is signed on to direct.
9 Fast and Furious 7
Since the passing of actor Paul Walker, the future of the Fast and Furious franchise may have been unclear. However, despite the tragedy, life - and Hollywood - must go on.
Spring of 2015 will see the release of the seventh Fast and Furious, starring Vin Diesel, Dwayne Johnson, Jason Statham, and Paul Walker in his last role. This movie franchise has become a massive hit for fans of fast cars and endless action. Each movie has made millions in box-office sales and, as long as the money continues to roll in, the series is likely to continue.
Directed by James Wan, the seventh Fast and Furious will show audiences the journey of Ian Shaw who vows revenge on Dominic Toretto for killing his brother.
Will Smith returns to the screen in the highly anticipated film, Focus. Smith stars as Nicky Spurgeon, a con artist who takes a young girl under his wing to teach her everything he knows. The girl, played by Margot Robbie, falls in love with Spurgeon and the two become romantically involved.
They break it off, but the woman returns years later and double crosses Spurgeon and his target of a complicated con. Glenn Ficarra and John Sequa are directing and wrote the screenplay. The project had a rocky start after multiple leads such as Ryan Gosling, Brad Pitt, and Ben Affleck dropped out. But after Will Smith signed on, the film was a go.
Focus is getting some attention for its rumoured use of Apple’s Final Cut Pro X. It will be the largest production to date edited by the program if the rumour is true.
7 In the Heart of the Sea
Director and former actor Ron Howard (Apollo 13, Rush) has become a master of drama and action. He will captivate audiences again with In the Heart of the Sea, a biographical movie set to be released in spring 2015.
Actors Benjamin Walker, Owen Chase, and Cillian Murphy play cabin mates who must survive at sea for 90 days after their ship is struck by a gigantic sperm whale. Eventually, with their drive to survive, they resort to cannibalism. This film is based on the true events of 1820 when an Essex whaleship and its crew suffered the same fate.
With Howard’s reputation and a star-studded cast, this movie will likely make millions in the box office and shouldn't disappoint critics.
Director Edgar Wright (The World’s End, Scott Pilgrim vs. The World) is taking the helm of the long-anticipated film adaptation of Marvel Comic’s Ant-Man. Set to release in the summer of 2015, Ant-Man will star an unlikely leading man for a superhero movie, funnyman Paul Rudd.
The film will also star Judy Greer and Michael Pena. Rudd will play Scott Lang, a conman who has the ability to shrink in size while harnessing super-human strength. Outfitted with a super-suit (which, obviously, resembles an ant), Lang will help his mentor pull off a heist and save the world. But a superhero film is nothing without the villain. Ant-Man will meet his match with The Red Queen, the daughter of his beloved mentor.
Tomorrowland may be the most riveting live-action film Disney has ever produced. Starring George Clooney and Britt Robinson, the spring 2015 film will bring audiences into a secret world shared by a young girl and a genius inventor.
Although the film’s title is the same name of one of Disney’s theme-park attractions, the two reportedly have little to do with each other in terms of theme, locations, or style.
There's a lot of mystery surrounding this May 2015 release. A trailer has been released, but it reveals very little other than the cast and a basic premise - a girl discovers a pin that transports her to a different time. Hype will probably follow when more detailed trailers are released.
4 Jurassic World
The first Jurassic Park released in 1993 was acclaimed for its incredibly realistic special effects, the performances of Sam Neill and Jeff Goldblum, and the direction of Steven Spielberg. The film was a hit and sparked the release of two other movies, the second starring Jeff Goldblum, and the third starring Sam Neill.
After 14 years of waiting, the franchise is back with a new cast of characters, including Chris Pratt (Parks and Recreation, Guardians of the Galaxy) and Judy Greer. Producers of the film have been very quiet about the plot and nothing official has been released. However, with the high budgets of today’s blockbusters and the franchise's reputation for cutting edge special effects, it's expected to be nothing less than a feast for the senses.
3 Avengers: Age of Ultron
The only thing better than a movie featuring one superhero is a movie featuring six. Marvel’s The Avengers are a group of superheroes that band together to stop the world from being destroyed by a variety of villains.
In this sequel, Tony Stark (Iron Man) played by Robert Downey Jr. attempts to reboot a peacekeeping program during the group’s hiatus. Ultron is a self-aware artificial intelligence that turns on the group and the world despite being created for good. With humans now the enemy, the Avengers must come together again to stop the the army of Iron Man-like robots under the control of Ultron.
The film includes the cast of the previous movies including Mark Ruffalo, Jeremy Renner, Scarlett Johansson, Chris Evans, and Chris Hemsworth in their respective superhero roles. Joss Whedon will direct.
2 Fifty Shades of Grey
Valentine’s Day, the release date of this movie, couldn't be more perfect. Based on the highly popular novel of the same name, Fifty Shades of Grey tells the story of student Anastasia Steele and her erotic encounters with Christian Grey, a billionaire who seduces Steele into a world of extreme sexual submission.
Even with relatively unknown stars Dakota Johnson and Jamie Dornan, the film is bound to be a success considering the wild popularity of the best-selling novel on which it's based. The sexual nature of the plot will tantalize, and perhaps shock, audiences. Set for release in early 2015, fans of the novel can hardly wait to see how the movie will hold up to the erotic book.
1 Star Wars: Episode VII
Star Wars is back in 2015 and it will surely draw millions - upon millions - of both fans and general moviegoers. Will this mega-movie franchise ever end? This instalment is certainly not the last we will see of the Jedi and Sith as they battle it out in far-off worlds.
The previous episodes of Star Wars starred Liam Neeson and Ewan McGregor as Jedi Master protagonists. But this instalment includes rising stars along with many actors from the original movie including Harrison Ford, Mark Hamill, and Carrie Fisher.
The new installment in this favourite franchise is expected to make huge stars of relative newcomers Adam Driver (Girls, Frances Ha) and Domhnall Gleeson (Frank) who will be joining the cast of veterans of the Force. Die-hard fans may be either disappointed or ecstatic that George Lucas will not be directing. For Episode VII, director J.J. Abrams will be calling all the shots.