Film and TV

Here's Your Presumptive 2022 Movie Preview

This time, it's planetary.
This time, it's planetary. Lionsgate
Movie theaters made something of a comeback in 2021, with dual release strategies fading and more and more new movies advertising as "only in theaters." Even so, studios still hedged their bets, shoving several major features to next year or beyond.

Any 2022 preview, therefore, comes with the caveat that some of these titles may once again be delayed thanks to a pandemic that lingers in large part due to the continued reluctance of a group of vocal morons to getting a vaccine that would allow us to get back to something resembling our normal lives.

Not that anyone really wants to see that new Fantastic Beasts movie, but enough is enough.
THE SEQUELS

JACKASS FOREVER (February 4)
I think I had this on my list of most-anticipated movies of 2021 and my position hasn't changed. Kinda wish I hadn't seen the bear in the preview, though.

DEATH ON THE NILE (February 11)
Think of this as the less fun Knives Out 2. And they swapped out a problematic Johnny Depp for a problematic Armie Hammer. Kinky.
DOWNTON ABBEY: A NEW ERA (March 18)
My concept of a "new era" involces the Crawleys et. al being replaced with teenage influencers who have to save the Abbey from a Brexit-obsessed politician. Imagine my disappointment.

FANTASTIC BEASTS: THE SECRETS OF DUMBLEDORE (April 15)
They're replacing Depp all over the place. Here, Mads Mikkelsen steps in as the evil wizard Grindelwald. Too bad they can't do anything about the author.

LEGALLY BLONDE 3 (May 22)
The last update on this was that Mindy Kaling was finishing the script and MGM had confirmed a May, 2022 release date. I guess making movies during a pandemic is hard.
TOP GUN: MAVERICK (May 27)
Declining military recruitment quotas and Tom Cruise's ego will prove to be a profitable combo. And is it too much to ask for Miles Teller to share Anthony "Goose" Edwards' fate?

JURASSIC WORLD DOMINION (June 10)
They got the band back together (Jeff Goldblum, Laura Dern, Sam Neill) to - presumably - team up with the new kids to finally hunt down and kill the franchise's greatest menace: BD Wong's Dr. Wu.

MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE 7 (September 30)
I still firmly believe Tom Cruise is going to die filming one of these movies and the end result will be the greatest action sequence ever filmed. Reminds me of Bill Hicks' idea to use terminally ill people as stunt performers.

HALLOWEEN ENDS (October 14)
Ends? Don't threaten me with a good time.

CREED III (November 23)
It won't happen, but the greatest climax to this series would be the return of Mr. T.

AVATAR 2 (December 16)
James Cameron originally planned on a 2014 release for Avatar 2, followed by one other sequel. Now there are movies planned through 2028. Far be it from me to bet against Cameron, but who is really asking for four more movies in this universe? Aside from Papyrus font enthusiasts, I mean.

THE CARTOONS

HOTEL TRANSYLVANIA: TRANSFORMANIA (January 14)
It finally happened: a shameless cash grab that even Adam Sandler doesn't want to be a part of. Good work, everybody.

THE ICE AGE ADVENTURES OF BUCK WILD (January 28)
Sometimes it's gratifying to release a movie that requires no effort on the part of those coming up with the titles for the inevitable porn version.

TURNING RED (March 11)
A kid who turns into a red panda when angry is a cute concept, but what are the odds Disney will be able to resist an Incredible Hulk crossover?
SONIC THE HEDGEHOG 2 (April 8)
I never saw the original Sonic, but I appreciate that Robotnik's (Jim Carrey) mustache is more historically accurate here.

THE BAD GUYS (April 22)
Not a sequel to the Will Ferrell/Mark Wahlberg comedy, unfortunately. A voice cast that includes Sam Rockwell, Marc Maron, and Awkwafina is certainly tempting.

THE BOB'S BURGERS MOVIE (May 27)
No indication whether or not this will be non-canonical.
LIGHTYEAR (June 17)
Please inject Tim Allen's indignation at not being asked to reprise his Toy Story role directly into my veins.

MINIONS: THE RISE OF GRU (July 1)
The Minions are known for attaching themselves to villains, yet conveniently took a powder during the mid-20th century. Ultimately a good thing, since their antics probably wouldn't be as funny under Stalin.

LYLE, LYLE CROCODILE (November 18)
In looking up the plot synopsis for this, I went down a rabbit hole regarding one of writer/directors Will Speck and Josh Gordon's earlier efforts, the Geico Caveman sitcom. Wow. Anyway, I'm sure this will be just fine.

THE SUPERHEROES

MORBIUS (January 28)
While it's amusing that the superhero stranglehold on movie studios means third-tier characters like "The Living Vampire" are getting big budget films, I still want Blade to show up and groin kick Lared Leto to death.

THE BATMAN (March 4)
Finally, an angry Batman.
DOCTOR STRANGE IN THE MULTIVERSE OF MADNESS (May 6)
The Dr. Strange stuff was the weakest part of Spider-Man: No Way Home, so I hope they're finally going to find some way to make this "multiverse" crap interesting.

THOR: LOVE AND THUNDER (July 8)
Taika Waititi took the character with the worst Marvel track record and ended up with a top 10 MCU movie. Time will tell if he can recapture the magic post-Endgame (and without hot Death Goth Cate Blanchett), but I'm here for it.

BLACK ADAM (July 29)
Speaking of Marvel, they were able to make not one but two successful movies about characters almost nobody heard of/cared about (the Guardians of the Galaxy). Warner Bros.' patchwork attempt at building its own extended universe fills me with less confidence.

SAMARITAN (August 26)
So this is *not* about Kurt Busiek's hero from his award-winning Astro City run, or Matt Hawkins' Top Cow character, but rather Escape Room/Lego Ninjago writer Bragi Schut's digital comic. Okay then.

SPIDER-MAN: ACROSS THE SPIDER-VERSE (PART ONE) (October 7)
If they kill Spider-Ham, we riot.
THE FLASH (November 4)
It's Andy Muschietti gets first crack at picking up the pieces of the so-called SnyderVerse. Not sure if even Michael Keaton's Batman is up to that task.

BLACK PANTHER: WAKANDA FOREVER (November 11)
Hoo boy. Ryan Coogler's job was tricky enough just dealing with the aftermath of his star's death, then his presumptive lead started saying a bunch of stupid shit. Just give Lupita Nyong'o the title already.

AQUAMAN AND THE LOST KINGDOM (December 16)
And so on. Hey, here's an idea: let Scorsese direct the next Superman movie.

THE REBOOOTS

SCREAM (January 14)
The hell with this. The real question is whether Courtney Cox will be revising her role as Julie Winston in the upcoming He-Man reboot?

TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE (February 18)
The ninth movie in the franchise is a direct sequel to the 1974 original, and all because — get this — Lionsgate lost the rights to the character because of delays in the release of 2017's Leatherface. I wouldn't hold out hope for a Matthew McConaughey/Renée Zellweger reunion, either.
THE LOST CITY (March 25)
It it walks like Romancing the Stone and it talks like Romancing the Stone ...

SNEAKERELLA (May 13)
AKA More Tales From The Public Domain.

SALEM'S LOT (August 9)
Shut up, I'm actually excited about this one.


EVERYTHING ELSE

THE 355 (January 7)
Huh, they finally greenlit Fox Force Five.

MOONFALL (February 4)
The moon finally gets revenge on humanity for not cleaning up all that garbage we left up there.

UNCHARTED (February 18)
I know a lot of dudes who would've been thrilled for this movie in 2009. One of them is Nathan Fillion.
EVERYTHING EVERYWHERE ALL AT ONCE (March 25)
The legendary Michelle Yeoh stars as an interdimensional badass in a movie directed by the folks who gave us Swiss Army Man. If that doesn't pique your curiosity, you have my sympathies.
THE NORTHMAN (April 22)
Similarly, a "Viking revenge epic" from the director of The Witch and The Lighthouse might have a ... specific appeal. I imagine the presence of Alexander Skarsgård's abs will help.

ELVIS (June 24)
Don't lie, you're looking forward to a Baz Luhrmann-choreographed toilet death sequence as much as I am.

NOPE (July 22)
Little is known about Jordan Peele's follow-up to 2019's Us except that it stars Daniel (Get Out) Kaluuya and Keke Palmer and is probably not a feature-length version of that octopus meme.

BEAST (August 19)
We've officially wrung out the "killer crocodilian" movie and have moved on to "killer lion." Idris Elba is here to sweeten the pot.

TILL (October 7)
I'd say it's surprising that it took this long to make a movie about Emmett Till's mother's struggle to get justice for her son, but then [waves hands]. Yeah.

TICKET TO PARADISE (October 21)
About the only thing recommending this is the prospect of George Clooney and Julia Roberts playing a (presumably) bitterly divorced couple. Asshole Clooney is always worth a watch.
SHE SAID (November 18)
Can Hollywood introspectively examine the role it's played in decades of sexual harassment and abuse? I guess it's a win that Harvey Weinstein's former company isn't involved with this.

I WANNA DANCE WITH SOMEBODY (December 23)
If Kasi Lemmons includes a dramatization of the "crack is wack" interview, I'll buy a physical copy of every Whitney Houston CD.

BABYLON (December 25)
Damien Chazelle follows up La La Land and First Man with a movie about Hollywood's Golden Age that somehow doesn't star Ryan Gosling. 
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Peter Vonder Haar writes movie reviews for the Houston Press and the occasional book. The first three novels in the "Clarke & Clarke Mysteries" - Lucky Town, Point Blank, and Empty Sky - are out now.
Contact: Pete Vonder Haar