New year brings new movies

Mikayla Kudron, A&E Editor

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2019 is shaping up to be another exciting year in film. With the remakes of several Disney favorites and the adaption of Broadway musicals to the big screen, moviegoers have a lot to look forward to this year. Here are ten upcoming films worth checking out.

Wicked Dec 20 2019

A beloved story and Broadway musical are making it to the big screen in 2019. Wicked, a novel by Gregory Maguire,

tells the story of the Wicked Witch of the West. If her name sounds familiar, that’s because the character was first introduced in The Wizard of Oz. The Wicked Witch of the West, or Elphaba as Maguire names her, terrorized Dorothy Gale in order to obtain the ruby slippers that once belonged to her sister in the original tale. The movie will take after the Broadway musical with familiar songs and two new musical pieces. The musical and book both begin with Elphaba’s birth and follow her through adulthood, especially her time spent in high school. Her relationships with teachers and friends, some of which you may recognize, shaped Elphaba to become the Wicked Witch. Many musical lovers are hoping to see Idina Menzel and Kristin Chenoweth, Broadway’s first Elphaba and Glinda, reprise their roles as adult versions of the characters, but the cast list has not been released. Fans of the Wizard of Oz will love Wicked, as it redefines the witch and also adds depth to other classic characters, such as Glinda the Good, the tin man, the scarecrow, and the Wizard of Oz himself.

Cats Dec 20 2019

Cats debuted on Broadway in 1982 and instantly became a hit. It was based on T.S. Eliot’s Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats. The musical tells the story of the Jellicle Cats, a tribe of wild felines. It takes place on the night of the ‘Jellicle Choice’, when the cats must decide who among them will make the journey to the ‘Heaviside Layer’, a mystical

realm, and come back to a new life as a different cat. All the main characters have songs introducing themselves, and many may recognize the classic song “Memories”, sung by Grizabella the Glamour Cat. Cats has been known for its talented dancers, so many fans are excited to see the choreography on the big screen. Though the movie will have the same characters, music, and plot as the Broadway productions, there is one major difference: The leader of the Jellicle Cats, Old Deuteronomy, will be female in the movie, and portrayed by Judi Dench. The movie will star many big names, such as Taylor Swift, Jason Derulo, James Corden, Rebel Wilson, and Jennifer Hudson in the main role of Grizabella the Glamour Cat.

Toy Story 4 June 21 2019

   The Toy Story franchise began in 1995. Toy Story features a boy named Andy (John Morris) and his toys- toys that come to life whenever Andy isn’t around. The movie kicks off with the introduction of a new toy, Buzz Lightyear (Tim Allen), who thinks he’s a real space ranger. Andy’s favorite toy, Woody the cowboy (Tom Hanks), is incredibly jealous when Andy pays extra attention to Buzz. Woody and Buzz get lost and end up working together to find their way back to Andy. Years later, Andy has grown up and passed his toys down to 4 year old Bonnie (Emily Hahn). Woody is once again unnerved by a new addition to the toy box when a new, homemade toy, Forky (Tony Hale), is introduced. Woody learns to put their differences aside when he is taken on a road trip, during which he will be reunited with an old friend.

Shazam April 5 2019

Billy Batson (Zachary Levi and Asher Angel) is a 14 year old orphan with a secret. After boarding a subway car, Billy is transported to another dimension. In this realm, an ancient wizard named Shazam gives him the ability to become an adult superhero. He can access his new powers and identity by whispering “Shazam”. Billy and one of his foster brothers are determined to discover the limits of Billy’s new powers. Danger arrives in the form of Dr. Thaddeus Sivana (Mark Strong), a mad scientist. According to the comics that inspired Shazam, Dr. Sivana was shunned by the scientific community for his unorthodox theories and was exiled to another planet. After years of plotting his revenge, Billy must protect the world from his wrath.

It: Chapter 2 sept 6 2019

In 2017, It took the world by storm. In 2019, a sequel will be released, set 27 years after the last movie. Based on a novel by Stephen King, It is a creature with mysterious abilities. It can shapeshift, manipulate people, and is only seen by children. It terrorizes the children of Derry, Maine every 27 years in the form of Pennywise the Dancing Clown, making the local sewer system Its home. The original It (1990) took place in 1960. It: Chapter 1 (2017) took place in 1988, and It: Chapter 2 (2019) will take place in 2016, making each incident 27 years apart. It: Chapter 1 (2017) follows a band of misfits who called themselves “The Losers Club”, formed when each of the kids discovered they were being terrorized by the same monster. Fans of the most recent installment will be happy to hear that It: Chapter 2 will feature The Losers Club once again when they return to Derry, Main for revenge against Pennywise. Bill Skarsgard will reprise his role of Pennywise the Clown in It: Chapter 2.

Men in Black: International June 14 2019

   The original Men In Black, having premiered in 1997, followed Agent J (Will Smith) and Agent K (Tommy Lee Jones). The agents work for a secret governmental organization whose goal is to protect Earth from alien invasion. Equipped

with carbonizers, guns, and a device with the power to erase memories, Agents K and J successfully destroy threats from outer space. The original Men In Black series takes place in the United States, and is based loosely on a comic series of the same name. In 2019, Men In Black: International will be released. Men in Black: International is actually a spin-off rather than a continuation of the Men in Black series. The spin-off will feature a London-based team of Men in Black. Agent M (Tessa Thompson) and Agent H (Chris Hemsworth) investigate a murder mystery that will send them traveling around the world.

The Lion King July 19 2019

Disney fans were thrilled when the announcement of a Lion King remake came out in 2016, and the time has finally come. The Lion King, to be released in July of 2019, is a remake of the original animated film of the same name. The new edition will use Computer Generated Images (CGI) to recreate the lovable characters of Simba, Timon, Pumbaa, Mufasa, and the not-so-loveable Scar. Simba (Donald Glover ) is a young lion and prince of his pride. His evil uncle, Scar (Chiwetel Ejiofor), lures him and his father, Mufasa (James Earl Jones ), into a stampede with hopes to kill them and become net in line for the throne. However, only Mufasa is killed. Simba returns as an adult to try to take back the pridelands from the rule of Scar, and even finds love along the way in his childhood friend, Nala (Beyonce)

Aladdin May 24 2019

After 27 years of waiting, Disney has announced a live action remake of the classic kids movie Aladdin. Aladdin (Mena Massoud)  is a thief who lives in the ancient city of Agrabah. After rubbing a golden

lamp, Aladdin meets a genie (Will Smith) who offers to grant him three wishes. Through his wild antics with the genie, Aladdin meets Princess Jasmine (Naomi Scott), the Sultan’s daughter. When Aladdin discovers the evil plot of one of the Sultan’s closest advisors, he and the genie try to save Jasmine and maybe make her love Aladdin as well. There is talk of adding to Jasmine’s character in order to add dimension, but fans must be pleased to hear that Will Smith will pay homage to Robin Williams, the original voice of the genie.

Artemis Fowl Aug 9 2019

The Artemis Fowl sci fi fantasy series is written by Erin Colfer and was a childhood favorite of many. Artemis (Ferdia Shaw) is a 12 year old prodigy and leader of the Fowl empire, which has been in his family for generations. AFter extensive research, Artemis believes he has proof of the existence of fairies. He soon discovers that the fairies live in an underground society similar to his own. Through his studies, Artemis learns about fairy rituals and is able to locate a spot where one might take place. Upon arrival, he finds a fairy, Holly (Lara McDonnell), performing a ritual to replenish her magic. He tranquilizes her, hoping he can hold her for ransom in order to get his family out of debt. The book series has seven books, so there may be more movies to come after the 2019 release.

Dark Phoenix June 7, 2019

Dark Phoenix will be the 12th installment of the X-Men series. According to the original

Marvel Comics, the X-Men were born mutants, meaning their superhero powers are innate. They were raised like regular boys and girls in some ways, but their schooling included honing in on their abilities. The current X-Men are comprised of Magneto, Mystique, Beast, Cyclops, Storm, Nightcrawler, and Jean Grey. In Dark Phoenix, an intergalactic mission goes wrong and sends a solar flare towards the team. As a result, telekinesis and telepathic mutant Jean Grey accidentally releases Phoenix, an entity that had been sharing Jean’s body. The X-Men will all be portrayed by their previous actors, including Jennifer Lawrence, James McAvoy, Sophie Turner, Jessica Chastain, and more.