Historically speaking, September has not been fertile ground for big moneymakers or awards season favorites at the movies. But with the COVID-19 pandemic continuing to throw everything out of whack, and with the film industry continuing to shift into more fluid release strategies, that may be changing. This month, we’ve still got some big movies with big names behind them, ranging from superheroics to psychological terror to pure fantasy. Based on numbers compiled from our Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter polls, here are the five most anticipated movies of September!
#1 on Facebook and Instagram, #2 on Twitter
In theaters on September 3
As is typically the case for these lists, the most anticipated movie of the month should come as no surprise to anyone. Simu Liu’s Shang-Chi is the first Asian superhero in the Marvel Cinematic Universe to get his own film, so there is considerable excitement for his debut. The film also picks up on loose threads from both Iron Man and Iron Man 3 and boasts another noteworthy cast that includes Michelle Yeoh, Awkwafina, and the — ahem — legendary Tony Leung, which only makes it more of a must-see. Shang-Chi was only bested by one other movie in our social media polls, but more on that a bit later.
#2 on Facebook and Instagram, #3 on Twitter
In theaters and on HBO Max on September 10
James Wan was courted by some big franchises — the Fast and Furious and DCEU, to be precise — to step away from horror a couple of times in the past few years, and the last time he brought us an original creation was the very first Conjuring movie back in 2013. Now he’s back with some new tricks up his sleeve in Malignant, which stars Annabelle Wallis as a woman who suffers from recurring nightmares about violent murders, only to discover her dreams are actually happening in real life. This one sat right behind Shang-Chi in all of our social polls, only slipping to third on Twitter because of the next movie on this list…
#1 on Twitter, #3 on Instagram
On Amazon Prime on September 3
It would appear the Camilla Cabello fans came out in force on Twitter, as the singer’s feature debut rocketed to the top of that poll. She plays the titular princess in a reimagined, jukebox musical version of Cinderella, starring alongside Billy Porter, Idina Menzel, Pierce Brosnan, Minnie Driver, and more. The new film takes a few small liberties with the classic tale — “Ella” is an aspiring dressmaker, Porter plays her “Fab G” — and fans are sure to find the creative interpretations of familiar songs delightful. Originally scheduled for a theatrical release, this one will stream exclusively on Amazon Prime.
#4 on Facebook and Twitter, #5 on Instagram
In theaters on September 24
Speaking of musicals, the fourth spot on this list belongs to a film based on a multiple Tony-winning Broadway hit with the stage production’s star reprising his role. Ben Platt stars as the titular high school student, who finds himself wrapped up in an ever-expanding web of lies when a classmate commits suicide and his family believes Evan was his only friend. Based on the original musical’s success, it’s not surprising to see the film’s roster of A-listers, which includes Julianne Moore, Amy Adams, Kaitlyn Dever, and Amandla Stenberg, among others, and fans looking forward to the adaptation helped propel it into the top five.
#3 on Facebook, #5 on Twitter
In theaters on September 10
Lastly, we have a somber, thoughtful drama from writer-director Paul Schrader, whose last film, First Reformed, was such a stunner that everyone was clamoring to see what he’d do next. Oscar Isaac stars as a card-playing ex-con who runs into young man (Tye Sheridan) with a dark connection to his past life in the military and attempts to set him on a path to redemption. The film just had its world premiere at the Venice Film Festival, and reviews thus far have been glowing, making it a solid choice to round out the top five of the month.
Thumbnail by Marvel Studios