Although the calendar says it's only mid-April, Hollywood believes summer is almost upon us. Every year, the film industry kicks off the summer season a few weeks before Memorial Day, which is when most of us begin our summer season in earnest. I've never quite understood why Hollywood does this, as a lot of people are still in work or school during May, but they do it every year. And they also wrap up the summer season before anyone else--have you ever noticed that August is when the studios release a lot of garbage? That's a whole month of summer they unwittingly give up for some strange reason.
Arguing about the way Hollywood does business is not the reason for this post, however. The purpose is to showcase some of the most anticipated films of the season. None of the movies featured here are highbrow art, but that's not what summer moviegoing is about, is it? Here are six films that Hollywood will be wooing you to the multiplexes with beginning in just two weeks!
First up: Paramount Pictures and Marvel Entertainment present Iron Man, starring Robert Downey, Jr. as the titular character, and costarring Gwenyth Paltrow and Terrence Howard. Opens May 2nd. See what I mean by Hollywood's early start?
The very next week, Warner Brothers presents Speed Racer, adapted from the beloved anime series and starring Emile Hirsch as Speed, Susan Sarandon as his mother, and Lost's Matthew Fox as Racer X. Opens May 9th.
On May 22nd, welcome back to the silver screen Harrison Ford in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. I'm a huge Indiana Jones fan, so I'm psyched about this one.
Next up is another film based on a comic book, and one of my alltime favorite fictional characters: The Incredible Hulk, starring Edward Norton, Liv Tyler, and William Hurt, and presented by Universal. Note that this is NOT a sequel to the film Hulk directed by Ang Lee and released in 2003. The plotline starts from scratch with this one. Opens June 13th.
Back to Warner Brothers with a project long in the making: Get Smart, starring Steve Carrel as secret agent Maxwell Smart and Anne Hathaway as Agent 99. I just saw this trailer for the first time today, and it's hilarious! Opens June 20th.
Finally, another long-awaited film, and one that will be released with a very unfortunate cloud hanging over it: The Dark Knight, starring Christian Bale as Batman and the late Heath Ledger as the greatest comic book villain of all time, The Joker. I only saw two thirds of the previous Batman film, Batman Begins, and wasn't very impressed, but I'll give this sequel the benefit of the doubt. Opening, surprisingly to me, on the late date of July 18th.
I think I've covered the most anticipated films coming out this summer; let me know if there are any I missed, as I'm not as aware of the latest going-on in entertainment as I used to be. I'd like to see every one of these films, but chances are I'll only see them if they're on HBO next year, and even then I'll have to fight for the time to see them. I keep busy, folks.
Hooray for Hollywood!