Summer Movie Preview 2012

by | May 3, 2012 | Comments

Having a tough time trying to figure out which of the big Summer movies are worth seeing this year? Have no fear! We here at Rotten Tomatoes know the value of a helpful guide in choosing where to spend your hard-earned money, and to that end, we present our annual Summer Movie Preview! What you see below is a quick look at the biggest and most anticipated films of May, June, July, and August, complete with trailers and cast and crew listings! With that in mind, stay cool, have a great summer, and K.I.T.

Click on the buttons below to jump to the corresponding month.


Marvel’s The Avengers

Cast: Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo, Scarlett Johansson, Samuel L. Jackson

Director: Joss Whedon

Writers: Joss Whedon, Zak Penn

Release Date: May 4

The Avengers is undoubtedly one of the summer’s most anticipated movies. How could it not be? It’s got Robert Downey Jr. as Iron Man, Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow, Chris Evans as Captain America, Chris Hemsworth as Thor, and Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury. Plus, fanboy fave Joss Whedon directed and wrote the script. The Avengers is already Certified Fresh, so it appears the wait was absolutely worth it.

Dark Shadows

Cast: Johnny Depp, Helena Bonham Carter, Eva Green, Chloë Grace Moretz, Michelle Pfeiffer

Director: Tim Burton

Writer: Seth Grahame-Smith

Release Date: May 11

Tim Burton and Johnny Depp team up yet again, this time for an adaptation of the cult soap opera Dark Shadows. But rather than update the gothic look and feel of the TV show, the film harkens back to Burton’s earlier movies; it’s a tale of supernatural forces butting in on a dysfunctional family. Depp stars as Barnabas, a wealthy 18th century playboy who becomes a vampire breaking a witch’s heart. After a long slumber, Barnabas awakes to find himself in the 1970s — and in the center of the squabbling family that now occupies his old mansion. Joining in the fun are Michelle Pfeiffer, Helena Bonham Carter, Eva Green, and Chloë Grace Moretz.


Cast: Taylor Kitsch, Liam Neeson, Alexander Skarsgård, Brooklyn Decker, Rihanna

Director: Peter Berg

Writers: Erich Hoeber, Jon Hoeber

Release Date: May 18

Yep, someone spent a lot of money to make a blockbuster out of a board game. That said, if early reviews are any indication, the special effects were a solid investment — critics say Peter Berg’s take on Battleship is loaded with mindlessly awesome explosions and set pieces. Still, those same critics hint that someone should have peeled off a couple extra bucks for a better script. Taylor Kitsch, Alexander Skarsgård, Brooklyn Decker, Rihanna, and Liam Neeson star in the tale of a group of Naval personnel who must defend the earth from an armada of menacing alien ships.

The Dictator

Cast: Sacha Baron Cohen, Anna Faris, Megan Fox, Ben Kingsley, John C. Reilly

Director: Larry Charles

Writers: Sacha Baron Cohen, Alec Berg, David Mandel, Jeff Schaffer

Release Date: May 18

Sacha Baron Cohen is arguably cinema’s greatest living gonzo mockumentarian — as Borat, a clueless foreigner, and as Bruno, an outrageous fashionista, he satirized and scandalized virtually everyone and everything in his general vicinity. He ditches the faux-doc format in The Dictator, a portrait of an oppressive, buffoonish Middle Eastern despot. Loosely based upon Charlie Chaplin’s classic The Great Dictator, the film is directed by Larry Charles (Borat, Bruno) and co-stars Megan Fox, Anna Faris, and Ben Kingsley.

What to Expect When You’re Expecting

Cast: Cameron Diaz, Matthew Morrison, Elizabeth Banks, Jennifer Lopez, Anna Kendrick, Dennis Quaid

Director: Kirk Jones

Writers: Shauna Cross, Heather Hach, Heidi Murkoff

Release Date: May 18

Yeah, it’s based on the bestselling pregnancy guide, but What to Expect When You’re Expecting boasts an all-star cast that includes Jennifer Lopez, Cameron Diaz, Matthew Morrison, Elizabeth Banks, Anna Kendrick, Dennis Quaid, and Chris Rock. It’s the story of five interconnected couples dealing with a variety of pregnancy and childbirth-related issues, and it features plenty of spirited discussions from both male and female perspectives. Kirk Jones ( Nanny McPhee) directs.

Moonrise Kingdom

Cast: Bill Murray, Ed Norton, Tilda Swinton, Bruce Willis

Director: Wes Anderson

Writer: Wes Anderson, Roman Coppola

Release Date: May 25

Opening the prestigious Cannes film festival, Wes Anderson’s return to live action after Fantastic Mr. Fox is also his first period piece. Set in 1960s New England, it follows two kids (Gilman and Hayward) who fall in love and run off together, prompting an eclectic search party (is Bill Murray, Ed Norton, Tilda Swinton and Bruce Willis eclectic enough for you?) to set out frantically after them. Inspired by the likes of Truffaut and British coming-of-age films of the era, it looks to be right within Anderson’s field of specialty — which is precisely why we’re excited.

Men in Black III

Cast: Will Smith, Tommy Lee Jones, Josh Brolin, Jemaine Clement, Alice Eve, Emma Thompson

Director: Barry Sonnenfeld

Writer: Lowell Cunningham

Release Date: May 25

Will Smith is Agent J. Tommy Lee Jones is Agent K. Josh Brolin is… also Agent K. In Men in Black III, J, everybody’s favorite galaxy defender, must go back in time to team up with his old partner in a convoluted attempt to thwart the agent’s assassination and save the future of the planet. Barry Sonnenfeld is back in the director’s chair, with new recruits Emma Thompson, Alice Eve, and Jemaine Clement joining the cast.

Chernobyl Diaries

Cast: Jesse McCartney, Jonathan Sadowski, Ingrid Bolsø Berdal, Olivia Dudley, Nathan Phillips, Devin Kelley

Director: Bradley Parker

Writers: Oren Peli, Shane Van Dyke, Carey Van Dyke

Release Date: May 25

Oren Peli, the guy behind the Paranormal Activity franchise, takes his patented brand of found-footage fright to one of the creepiest places on earth: Chernobyl. In Chernobyl Diaries, a group of American tourists decide to spice up their European vacation by heading to the site of history’s worst nuclear disaster. Soon, however, our heroes discover that they’re stranded — and they’re not alone. Peli produced and wrote the script to Chernobyl Diaries, which was directed by first-timer Bradley Parker.

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Piranha 3DD

Cast: Danielle Panabaker, Ving Rhames, David Hasselhoff, Christopher Lloyd, Garey Busey

Director: John Gulager

Writers: Marcus Dunstan, Patrick Melton

Release Date: June 1

As far as unapologetically tasteless endeavors go, you couldn’t ask for much more than 2010’s Piranha remake, so all we can say is, “More of the same, please.” And this looks like nothing if not more: We can only speculate as to what new, marvelous projection format 3DD entails (perhaps well-endowed ushers will physically assault the audience?), but one thing you can count on is more bloodthirsty fish, more scantily clad victims, and more — so very much more — quiet contemplation of the human condition. Also, Hasselhoff and Busey together? Expect Baywatch and Point Break references.

Battlefield America

Cast: Tristen M. Carter, Kida Burns, Zach Belandres, Marques Houston, Mekia Cox

Director: Chris Stokes

Writers: Marques Houston, Chris Stokes

Release Date: June 1

The trailer for Battlefield America proudly states, “From the Team That Brought You You Got Served,” and for good reason: we see the same director (Chris Stokes), same writer (Marques Houston, with an assist from Stokes), and same basic concept (drama built around hip-hop dance competitions). This time around, however, Houston plays a businessman who hires a professional dance instructor to teach a group of misfit tweens and preteens the hottest dance moves, all in preparation for the biggest youth dance battle in Long Beach, California. In other words, imagine You Got Served with kids, and that’s Battlefield America in a nutshell.

Snow White and the Huntsman

Cast: Kristen Stewart, Charlize Theron, Chris Hemsworth, Ray Winstone, Ian McShane, Toby Jones

Director: Rupert Sanders

Writers: Evan Daugherty, John Lee Hancock, Hossein Amini

Release Date: June 1

In a reimagining of the classic fairy tale, Snow White and the Huntsman stars Twilight heroine Kristen Stewart as the titular beauty and Charlize Theron as the evil queen whose quest for immortality prompts her to send a huntsman (Thor‘s Chris Hemsworth) after Snow White. The tables turn, however, when the huntsman sides with Snow White and offers to train her for the inevitable battle between good and evil. Not your average kid flick, this retelling of the familiar story sports a dark, epic tone, big action, and eye-popping special effects.

Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted

Cast: Ben Stiller, Chris Rock, David Schwimmer, Jada Pinkett, Frances McDormand, Sacha Baron Cohen

Directors: Eric Darnell, Tom McGrath, Conrad Vernon

Writers: Eric Darnell, Noah Baumbach

Release Date: June 8

After two movies and over $1 billion in worldwide box office receipts, Alex the lion (Ben Stiller), Marty the zebra (Chris Rock), Melman the giraffe (David Schwimmer), and Gloria the hippo (Jada Pinkett) still haven’t found their way back home to New York’s Central Park Zoo. Madagascar 3 follows the gang’s continuing misadventures as they tour various locales in Europe after their escape from Africa accidentally lands them in Monte Carlo. New voices joining the cast are Frances Mcdormand, Bryan Cranston, Jessica Chastain, and Martin Short, among others.


Cast: Michael Fassbender, Noomi Rapace, Charlize Theron, Idris Elba, Guy Pearce

Director: Ridley Scott

Writers: Jon Spaihts, Damon Lindelof

Release Date: June 8

There was a lot of mystery surrounding Ridley Scott’s latest sci-fi thriller, and early reports had Prometheus pegged as the unofficial prequel to Alien, which understandably excited many fans. We now know, however, that Prometheus is its own story, focusing on a group of scientists following a newly discovered star map to what they believe will reveal the origins of humanity on Earth. Scott’s trademark visuals are as striking as ever, and moviegoers who enjoy having their mind bent will probably not be disappointed.

Rock of Ages

Cast: Julianne Hough, Diego Boneta, Tom Cruise, Paul Giamatti, Russel Brand, Catherine Zeta-Jones

Director: Adam Shankman

Writers: Justin Theroux, Chris D’Arienzo, Allan Loeb

Release Date: June 15

Sherrie (Julianne Hough) is just a small town girl, living in a lonely world. She meets a city boy named Drew (Diego Boneta) on the Sunset Strip during the heady days of the glam metal era, and they fall in love. Adapted from the popular jukebox musical, Rock of Ages features a veritable smorgasbord of classic rock hits from the likes of Journey, Bon Jovi, Guns ‘n’ Roses, and the like, and its all-star ensemble includes Tom Cruise, Russell Brand, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Paul Giamatti, and Mary J. Blige. Director Adam Shankman hit big with Hairspray, so he certainly knows a thing or two about filming musicals.

That’s My Boy

Cast: Adam Sandler, Andy Samberg, Leighton Meester, Susan Sarandon

Director: Sean Anders

Writer: David Caspe

Release Date: June 15

Adam Sandler hasn’t struck critical gold in a long time, but he continues to be a hit with audiences. His latest farce is a comedy about a man named Donny (Sandler) who attempts to reconnect with the estranged son (Andy Samberg) he fathered as a teenager and raised to the age of 18. As with most of Sandler’s films, viewers can expect a healthy dose of slapstick, some gross-out humor, and a lot of men behaving badly. It also doesn’t hurt that folks like Susan Sarandon, James Caan, and SNL thesps Will Forte and Rachel Dratch show up in supporting roles.

To Rome With Love

Cast: Woody Allen, Jesse Eisenberg, Ellen Page, Alec Baldwin, Penélope Cruz, Great Gerwig, Judy Davis, Roberto Benigni

Director: Woody Allen

Writers: Woody Allen

Release Date: June 22

For the first time in a while, commercial expectations are high for a Woody Allen film. Midnight in Paris was the biggest hit of the director’s long career, so this follow up — about a cross-generational group of tourists, ex-pats and locals in various stages of life and love in Rome — will be watched with interest. Allen himself is back on screen this time, though we wonder if he’ll pass the baton of neurosis on to his obvious acting successor, Jesse Eisenberg. A fine cast of Allen alums (Baldwin, Cruz) and newcomers (Page, Gerwig) should keep the Woodster comfortably in his return to form.

Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter

Cast: Benjamin Walker, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Dominic Cooper, Alan Tudyk, Rufus Sewell, Anthony Mackie

Director: Timur Bekmambetov

Writers: Seth Grahame-Smith

Release Date: June 22

Based on author Seth Grahame-Smith’s novel of the same name (which he also adapted for the screen), Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter follows a recent trend of refocusing known characters and properties through a darker lens (e.g. Snow White and the Huntsman). Benjamin Walker is The Great Emancipator, whose mother’s death at the hand of the titular bloodsuckers compels him to become the greatest vampire hunter ever known. Directed by Timur Bekmambetov — no stranger to the genre (Night Watch, Day Watch) — the film is a unique mix of Civil War history and vampire mythology ripe for blockbuster consumption.


Cast: Kelly Macdonald, Emma Thompson, Billy Connolly, Kevin McKidd, Robbie Coltrane, Craig Ferguson, Julie Walters

Directors: Mark Andrews, Brenda Chapman

Writers: Mark Andrews, Brenda Chapman, Steve Purcell, Irene Mecchi

Release Date: June 22

Coming away from their first Rotten-rated film, last year’s Cars 2, Pixar looks to reestablish their dominance in the animation category with Brave, the Scotland-set story of a young girl named Merida (Kelly Macdonald) who stirs up controversy in her kingdom when she defies an age-old tradition. Determined to follow her heart, Merida seeks counsel with an eccentric witch (Julie Walters) who grants her one wish, which comes with its own beastly curse. Brave features Pixar’s typically lush animation and an accomplished voice cast that includes Emma Thompson, Billy Connolly, and Robbie Coltrane, among others.

Seeking a Friend for the End of the World

Cast: Steve Carell, Keira Knightley, Adam Brody, Connie Britton, Patton Oswalt

Director: Lorene Scafaria

Writer: Lorene Scafaria

Release Date: June 22

Seeking a Friend asks a familiar question: What would you do if you knew the world was going to end? Steve Carell plays Dodge Peterson, a newly single man who finds an unlikely friend in his neighbor Penny (Keira Knightley) after it’s been announced that an imminent asteroid crash will destroy all life on the planet. Together, Dodge and Penny embark on a journey to seek out Dodge’s childhood sweetheart before Earth’s time is up. Written and directed by first-timer Lorene Scafaria (writer of Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist), Seeking a Friend marks another “dramedic” turn for Carell after films like Little Miss Sunshine and Crazy, Stupid, Love, catering to those looking for a little melancholy in their rom-com.

Magic Mike

Cast: Channing Tatum, Alex Pettyfer, Matthew McConaughey, Matt Bomer, Cody Horn, Olivia Munn

Director: Steven Soderbergh

Writer: Reid Carolin

Release Date: June 29

Steven Soderbergh continues to be one of the most prolific working directors, churning out one or two movies a year (his action film Haywire only opened back in January). His latest film centers around an experienced male stripper named Mike (Channing Tatum in the title role), who takes an up-and-coming new dancer (Alex Pettyfer) under his wing and shows him the ropes of his new lifestyle. If Soderbergh’s track record is anything to go by (his last eight films have been Fresh), Magic Mike is likely to be another solid effort, blending humor and drama around a subject not often addressed in the movies.

People Like Us

Cast: Chris Pine, Elizabeth Banks, Olivia Wilde, Michelle Pfeiffer, Jon Favreau, Mark Duplass

Director: Alex Kurtzman

Writers: Alex Kurtzman, Roberto Orci, Jody Lambert

Release Date: June 29

Alex Kurtzman is best known for penning the screenplays behind movies like Star Trek, Transformers, and Cowboys & Aliens, along with his writing partner Roberto Orci, and the two of them serve this duty on People Like Us, as well. However, People Like Us marks Kurtzman’s directorial debut, and this family drama could not be more different from his previous work. Chris Pine stars as fast talking salesman Sam, who, upon learning of his father?s sudden death, also discovers he has a sister (Elizabeth Banks) he never knew about. In reconnecting with his estranged family, Sam must reconsider how he’s lived his own life. Featuring supporting turns from Olivia Wilde, Jon Favreau, and Michelle Pfeiffer, People Like Us looks to fill the sentimental spot in this year’s summer lineup.


Cast: Mark Wahlberg, Mila Kunis, Seth MacFarlane, Giovanni Ribisi, Patrick Warburton, Joel McHale

Director: Seth MacFarlane

Writers: Seth MacFarlane, Alec Sulkin, Wellesley Wild

Release Date: June 29

If a foul-mouthed, badly-behaved teddy bear — or TV’s Family Guy — is your idea of comedic genius, then this is the movie for you. FG creator Seth MacFarlane makes his directorial debut with Ted, which concerns a grown man (Mark Wahlberg) and his unhealthy bond with the titular stuffed toy (voiced by MacFarlane himself), a relationship that places the future with his potential girlfriend (Mila Kunis) in trouble. Mila Kunis or juvenile bear voiced by MacFarlane? Tough choice. Wahlberg is always at his best in comedy, and we welcome the return of his amusingly furrowed-brow self.

Tyler Perry’s Madea’s Witness Protection

Cast: Tyler Perry, Denise Richards, Eugene Levy, Danielle Campbell, Romeo Miller

Director: Tyler Perry

Writer: Tyler Perry

Release Date: June 29

Tyler Perry dons a dress and wig once again to play cantankerous mother figure Madea in his latest film, Witness Protection. Unlike most of his recent films, which have been rom-coms or dramas, Perry here goes for screwball farce, with Eugene Levy and Denise Richards as George and Kate Needleman, a New York City couple who must relocate when George finds himself at odds with the mob. And where does the lucky couple end up? At Madea’s house, of course! Perry’s films are rarely critical hits, but he enjoys a loyal audience, so if you’re a fan, you already know what you’re getting into, and you’ve probably already made up your mind to see this.

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The Amazing Spider-Man

Cast: Andrew Garfield, Emma Stone, Martin Sheen, Rhys Ifans

Director: Marc Webb

Writers: Alvin Sargeant, Steve Kloves, James Vanderbilt

Release Date: July 6

Why so soon? That’s the question many fans were asking when Sony announced they?d be rebooting the Spidey franchise, especially when 2007’s Spider-Man 3, despite a hefty gross, drew decidedly mixed reactions. Audiences will get their answer when Andrew Garfield swings into action against the Lizard this July, and director Marc Webb (best known for rom-com 500 Days of Summer) refits the Marvel property with a supposedly “edgier” approach. One thing’s for sure, we know this Peter Parker and his Gwen Stacy will have chemistry — Garfield and co-star Emma Stone are now an item for real.

Katy Perry: Part of Me 3D

Cast: Katy Perry, Lucas Kerr, Rachael Markarian

Director: Dan Cutforth , Jane Lipsitz

Writers: Joe Eszterhas

Release Date: July 6

Theorists have long wrestled with the revolutionary impact of feminist auteur Katy Perry on contemporary society. Now, this revealing insight takes us behind the genius, with new, never-before-seen interviews with Perry as she discusses her songwriting process and the influence of Simone de Beauvoir and Keyboard Cat on her worldview. Also, there are lots of glossy clips of the singer dancing in scantily clad outfits.


Cast: Taylor Kitsch, Aaron Johnson, Blake Lively, John Travolta, Uma Thurman, Benicio Del Toro

Director: Oliver Stone

Writers: Shane Salerno, Don Winslow, Oliver Stone

Release Date: July 6

Taylor Kitsch (John Carter) and Aaron Johnson (Kick-Ass) watch their careers go up in smoke, quite literally, as weed dealers who run afoul of a Mexican drug cartel in this thriller from director Oliver Stone — the man who wrote the cult drug classic Midnight Express. Put bluntly, Stone needs a hit after the disappointment of Wall Street 2, and with a great supporting cast that includes Blake Lively, Benicio del Toro, Salma Hayek, John Travolta and Uma Thurman — hopefully involving an adrenalin shot to the heart — this could be it.

Ice Age: Continental Drift

Cast: Ray Romano, Denis Leary, John Leguizamo, Peter Dinklage, Jennifer Lopez, Nick Frost

Directors: Steve Martino, Mike Thurmeier

Writers: Michael Berg, Jason Fuchs, Mike Reiss

Release Date: July 13

The long-awaited animated prequel to Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift finds Manny, Diego and Sid falling into the dangerous world of modified mammoth racing in the sleazy tundra-juku district… Wait, no, it’s actually another sequel to the mega franchise that has grossed more money worldwide than the Catholic church’s collection plate. Our furball heroes are cut adrift on an iceberg they turn into a ship, dueling sea creatures, pirates, and, later, crashing into the Titanic after they pass through a wormhole in the North Atlantic. Don’t hold us to the accuracy of that last part.

The Dark Knight Rises

Cast: Christian Bale, Anne Hathaway, Tom Hardy, Morgan Freeman,Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Michael Caine, Gary Oldman

Director: Christopher Nolan

Writers: Christopher Nolan, Jonathan Nolan, David S. Goyer

Release Date: July 20

Flying under the summer movie radar is this little arthouse piece, which we reckon might just be the sleeper hit of the season. Christian Bale reprises his role as Bruce Wayne, the capital-industrialist psychopath we last saw dressed in a Batman costume and running like a big baby from a bunch of puppies, having left the backwoods town of Gotham City in moral chaos and its most benevolent citizen dangling from a very high building. But this Dark Knight rises, as the title implies, and we assume it’s not just to get out of bed and make his toast and coffee in the morning. Batman battles the fearsome (and possibly lethal) Bane (Tom Hardy) and flirts with Catwoman (Anne Hathaway), while a number of unknown elements — who is Joseph Gordon-Levitt playing, indeed? — keep the surprise factor high. Spoiler: It was all a dream within a dream within a dream, and Bale, Keaton, Clooney, Kilmer and West are all figments of the same man’s mind.

Neighborhood Watch

Cast: Jonah Hill, Ben Stiller, Vince Vaughn, Richard Ayoade, Billy Crudup, Doug Jones

Director: Akiva Schaffer

Writers: Seth Rogen, Evan Goldberg, Jared Stern

Release Date: July 27

Turns out those suburban rent-a-cops aren’t on petty power trips, after all: The local neighborhood watch might just be — gulp — the first line of defense against an alien invasion. That’s the premise of this comedy from Superbad scribes Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg, which pits local schlubs Vince Vaughn, Jonah Hill, Ben Stiller and Richard Ayoade against visitors from outer space who want more from the planet than some Reeses’s Pieces. So, it’s Observe and Report meets Men in Black? We’ll have to wait and see, but the trailers look pretty amusing — and we can’t wait to see British geek comic Ayoade mix it up with the likes of Hill and Stiller.

Step Up Revolution

Cast: Kathryn McCormick, Ryan Guzman, Adam G. Sevani

Director: Scott Speer

Writer: Jenny Mayer

Release Date: July 27

Remember the halcyon days of 2008 when we were gifted with memorable sequel titles like Step Up 2: The Streets? They’re not even trying now. After Step Up 3D comes Step Up Revolution, the fourth movie in the urban dance franchise because, well, somebody keeps asking for them. No Channing Tatum this time (he’s off doing classy movies about strippers) but a fresh batch of gyrating talent will ensure the moves stay wicked — and, let’s face it, the choreography is what we’re here for. And the plot — about an aspiring dancer who arrives in Miami and gets involved with a dance crew that’s threatened by daddy’s development plans — couldn’t be any more perfectly cheesy.

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The Bourne Legacy

Cast: Jeremy Renner, Joan Allen, David Strathairn, Albert Finney, Scott Glenn

Director: Tony Gilroy

Writers: Tony Gilroy, Dan Gilroy

Release Date: August 4

The Bourne Legacy‘s tagline: “There was never just one.” How intriguing. Tony Gilroy, screenwriter for the original Bourne trilogy, steps up to the directorial plate (he’s previously directed Michael Clayton and Duplicity). Jeremy Renner, who will still be riding high on The Avengers wave in the months before Legacy‘s release, stars as Aaron Cross/Kenneth Gidson, another agent in these shadowy CIA experiments. Joan Allen, David Strathairn, Albert Finney, and Scott Glenn all reprise their
governmental roles.

Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days

Cast: Zachary Gordon, Devon Bostick, Rachael Harris, Steve Zahn

Director: David Bowers

Writer: Wallace Wolodarsky

Release Date: August 4

The trials and tribulations of wimpy kid Greg Heffley continue in this second sequel in the immensely popular series. Combining the plots of books The Last Straw and Dog Days together, the story picks up as Heffley complains and stumbles hi way through one misadventure after another. David Bowers, who directed the second film, returns, while screenplay duties have now been taken over by Simpsons veteran Wallace Wolodarsky.

Total Recall

Cast: Colin Farrell, Kate Beckinsale, Jessica Biel

Director: Len Wiseman

Writer: Mark Bomback

Release Date: August 4

We can remake it for you wholesale? Len Weisman, who hit it out of the park with an unlikely success known as Live Free or
Die Hard
, is directing a new version of the Phillip K. Dick short story, ostensibly about an everyman who comes to realize
that his life is perhaps an implanted memory and that the arguments he’s having with his wife may no longer be solved by
marriage counseling. Colin Farrell stars as said everyman Doug Quaid, whose curiosity gets the better of him and decides to
head to take a far-out vacation in his head. But before he can start sipping pina coladas on the beautiful shores of Uranus,
armed figures wipe out everyone around him, his wife wants to kill him, and all of a sudden Quaid knows kung-fu. By the end
of the movie, will Quaid figure out what is real?

The Campaign

Cast: Will Ferrell, Zach Galifianakis

Director: Jay Roach

Writer: Shawn Harwell, Chris Henchy

Release Date: August 10

Director Jay Roach (Meet the Parents, Dinner for Schmucks) directs Will Ferrell and Zach Galifianakis in
this comedy of two revial political hopefuls fighting for the same seat in congress. The film was written by Shawn Harwell,
an “Eastbound & Down” vet, and Chris Henchy, who wrote the infamously bizarre Land of the Lost, also starring Ferrell. With
Roach, Ferrell, and Galifianakis leading a strong supporting cast that includes Jason Sudeikis, John Lithgow, and Dan
Aykroyd, this campaign is likely to leave a trail of tears from laughter.

Hope Springs

Cast: Meryl Streep, Tommy Lee Jones, Steve Carrell

Director: David Frankel

Writer: Vanessa Taylor

Release Date: August 10

Will Meryl Streep get an Oscar nomination for her role in Hope Springs? Probably! She stars as one-half of a marriage, now on
the rocks after weathering decades of life and love. Her husband is played by Tommy Lee Jones, who’s along for the ride when
the sign up for a brutually honest week-long counseling session, led by Steve Carrell. David Frankel (The Big Year,
Marley & Me, The Devil Wears Prada) directs.

The Expendables 2

Cast: Sylvester Stallone, Jason Statham, Jet Li, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Bruce Willis, Dolph Lundgren

Director: Simon West

Writer: Sylvester Stallone

Release Date: August 10

Will The Expendables 2 be rated R or PG-13? That’s the million dollar question (or, according to this sequel’s enlarged
budget, $100 million) and while Sylvester Stallon had confirmed the PG-13 rating, there’s been some backtracking on his end
and so the jury’s still out. New to this outing are expanded roles for Arnold Schwarzenegger and Bruce Willis, and the
introduction of actress Yu Nan as Maggie, and Liam Hemsworth as Billy the Kid, whose role had to be cut from the original.

The Odd Life of Timothy Green

Cast: Joel Edgerton, Jennifer Garner

Director: Peter Hedges

Writer: Peter Hedges

Release Date: August 17

Jennifer Garner and Joel Edgerton play a married couple who are unable to conceive. The two put together a box that contains
everything they wish from the child they cannot have — their hopes, dreams, and aspirations. The box is buried in their
backyard and after a particularly stormy night, a young boy named Timothy Green appears on their doorstep in the morning
claiming to be their son. The cautiously delighted husband and wife welcome him into their lives and soon discover he has
more to offer than initially seems.


Cast: Kodi Smit-McPhee, Casey Affleck, Anna Kendrick, John Goodman, Leslie Mann

Director: Sam Fell

Writer: Sam Fell

Release Date: August 17

The second film from animation house Laika (Coraline), ParaNorman tells the ghoulish tale of Norman
Babcock, an ostracized little dude with funky hair who happens to have the ability to speak with the dead. And this ability also happens to come in handy when Norman’s town of Blithe Hollow is besieged by zombies, ghosts, and witches. Sam Fell
(Flushed Away, The Tale of Despereaux) directs an enormous cast including Kodi Smit-McPhee, Casey Affleck, Anna Kendrick, John Goodman, and Leslie Mann.


Cast: Jordin Sparks, Whitney Houston, Derek Luke

Director: Salim Akil

Writer: Salim Akil

Release Date: August 17

A remake of the 1976 movie of the same name, Sparkle tells the Motown-era tale of the titular girl (Jordin Sparks) trying to make it as a singer and star. Family drama impedes her progress, along with the volitale mixing of business with pleasure as she begins a new romance with her music manager (played by Derek Luke). In her fourth and final film role, Whitney Houston co-stars as Sparkle’s single mother. Director Salim Akil will dedicate the film to Houston’s memory.

The Apparition

Cast: Ashley Greene, Sebastian Stan, Tom Felton

Director: Todd Lincoln

Writer: Todd Lincoln

Release Date: August 24

It’s the Twilight and Harry Potter series together at last: The Apparition stars Ashley Greene (Alice Cullen in the vampiric series) and Tom Felton (Draco Malfoy, tormentor of wizards), a dark tale of college students haunted by an apparition loosed after a college parapsychological experiment. Sebastian Stan co-stars as Greene’s boyfriend, and together these kids must find a way to rid them of this spirit or face a lifetime of general annoyance with possible side results of grisly death.

Hit and Run

Cast: Kristen Bell, Dax Shepard, Bradley Cooper

Director: David Palmer, Dax Shepard

Writer: Dax Shepard

Release Date: August 24

Dax Shepard stars as Charlie Bronson a former getaway driver living under the witness protection program. When his girlfriend (Shepard’s real life fiance, Kristen Bell) is in dire need of a ride to Los Angeles, Bronson comes out of hiding and is instantly targeted by his former gang and the government. Shepard co-directs with David Palmer, whom he shared an identical working relationship on Brother’s Justice, a little-seen 2010 martial arts spoof. With its boost on action and romance, Hit & Run looks to fare much better.

Premium Rush

Cast: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Michael Shannon

Director: David Koepp

Writer: David Koepp

Release Date: August 24

Joseph Gordon-Levitt stars a adrenline-seeking Manhattan bike courier, who becomes the target of a corrupt cop (Michael Shannon) when he picks up a mysterious envelope. Shannon demands the contents of the envelope to end the ordeal; Gordon-Levitt of course sees it as his noble intention to keep it on his property (not to mention the premise of a rather exciting day). Writer-turned-director David Koepp has had his hands on a multitude of genres (from Ghost Town to Secret Window) but Premium Rush represents the first time he’ll be directing straight action.


Cast: Leslie Bibb, Ryan Kwanten, Amy Smart

Director: Takashi Shimizu

Writer: Takashi Shimizu

Release Date: August 31

Takashi Shimizu has made his name in his native land of Japan with The Grudge series returns to America (he also adapted the American versions) with his first original English production: 7500. Leslie Bibb, Amy Smart, Ryan Kwanten, and Scout Taylor-Compton star as travelers on the titular plane, which encounters supernatural horrors midflight.


Cast: Tom Hardy, Guy Pearce, Gary Oldman

Director: John Hillcoat

Writer: Nick Cave

Release Date: August 31

John Hillcoat has made his name cutting muscular and dark films like The Road and The Proposition is staying the course with his latest: Lawless. This movie gathers a who’s who of cool dudes: Tom Hardy! Guy Pearce! Gary Oldman! And…Shia LaBeouf! He’s kinda cool, right? Set during the Prohibition era in Virginia, a bootlegging gang comes face to face when the authorities catch wind of their activities and want a slice of that fat moneycake. Drawn guns, spilt blood, and steely gazes to follow.

The Possession

Cast: Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Kyra Sedgwick

Director: Ole Bornedal

Writer: Leslie Gornstein

Release Date: August 31

Buyer beware! A young girl picks up an antique box a yard sale, unaware that it contains an evil spirit within. Once unleashed, it begins to possess the young girl and it’s to her father and divorced mother (Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Kyra Sedgwick) to find a way to break the curse. Ola Bornedal directs, who also did both version of the ’90s cult horror flick, Nightwatch.

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