Let the 2013 Summer Movie Season Begin - Will This Top Last Year?
by Alex Billington
May 2, 2013
Tonight, movie fans around the United States everywhere are lining up for midnight showings of Marvel's Iron Man 3. It's the evening of May 2nd and the 2013 summer movie season is about to begin. Marvel jumped on this slot to follow-up The Avengers with another summer opening to pave the way. While there's always a particularly palpable sense of excitement at the beginning of a summer, after six years of writing about these openings (and many more years of living them), I've learned to never trust the early buzz. By the end, when we look back in August, everything is in a different place - big hits, big failures, lots of surprises inbetween. But it's time to finally get things underway, and this summer looks like it has a strong line-up.
In addition to Marvel's Iron Man 3, directed by Shane Black, in theaters this weekend, May is packed with some big hits already. Baz Luhrmann's adaptation of The Great Gatsby hits US theaters next weekend, May 10th. After that it's J.J. Abrams' sci-fi sequel Star Trek Into Darkness opening big on May 17th, quickly followed by Justin Lin's Fast & Furious 6 and Todd Phillips' The Hangover III out on May 24th. Hitting limited theaters that week is Richard Linklater's Before Midnight. To wrap up the month, Louis Leterrier's Now You See Me and M. Night Shyamalan's sci-fi After Earth are set for May 31st.
In June, things get a bit crazy, with The Purge on June 7th. But then there's Evan Goldberg & Seth Rogen apocalypse comedy This is The End on June 12th, right before Zack Snyder's Superman origin reboot Man of Steel lands in theaters on June 14th. Based on all the buzz, I've got a good feeling Man of Steel is going to open BIG. Also arriving in limited is Sofia Coppola's The Bling Ring. Two opposite movies hitting on June 21st - Marc Forster's World War Z with Brad Pitt, and Pixar's prequel Monsters University. Then to end this month, they're dropping Paul Feig's comedy The Heat, which might just be the sleeper hit of the summer, and Roland Emmerich's newest action extravaganza White House Down, on June 28th.
Finally, we get to July, which is usually the big month. For the 4th of July week, Disney is dropping Gore Verbinski's The Lone Ranger on July 3rd, with Illumination's animated sequel Despicable Me 2 hitting as well. Next up is one we're all excited for - Guillermo del Toro's monsters vs robots movie Pacific Rim, on July 12th, which should open huge. If you'd rather watch some dumb comedy, Adam Sandler's Grown Ups 2 also hits theaters then. Horror sequel V/H/S 2 arrives around this time, too. Next, DreamWorks Animation is dropping Turbo on Wednesday, July 17th, before James Wan's horror The Conjuring on July 19th. Also on the 19th is Dean Parisot's sequel RED 2 and the Reynolds/Bridges team-up R.I.P.D., plus in limited, Nicolas Winding Refn's Only God Forgives with Gosling. Finally, July ends with James Mangold's The Wolverine unleashing on July 26th, along with Woody Allen's new film Blue Jasmine and Ryan Coogler's Fruitvale Station. Finally, The Smurfs 2 is out on July 31st if anyone is interested.
As always, there's a few possible gems hidden in August. On the 2nd, we'll get Baltasar Kormákur's 2 Guns and Noam Murro's sequel 300: Rise of an Empire, plus in limited the sci-fi Europa Report and James Ponsoldt's The Spectacular Now. One of the big ones I'm waiting for is Neill Blomkamp's Elysium, set for August 9th, which is also the release of Disney's Planes. On the 16th is Jeff Wadlow's comic book sequel Kick-Ass 2, which could be a sleeper hit, and Robert Luketic's Paranoia, plus Maggie Carey's The To-Do List (formerly The Hand Job). Finally, to cap things off, there's Kar Wai Wong's epic The Grandmaster and Edgar Wright's new movie with Simon Pegg & Nick Frost, The World's End, landing on August 23rd.
It's always fun to take a look at the line-up that lies ahead before the summer begins, and then look back at everything later. So what do you make of this year's line-up? Anything that you think will stand out already, or is it impossible to top last year's 2012 summer of The Avengers, Prometheus, Battleship (right?) and The Dark Knight Rises? Only time will tell. And it's time to start kicking things off now. What are you looking forward to the most, and do you think it will live up to your expectations? I can only hope some of you are planning to camp out for a midnight movie or two this summer. I remember back to our camp out for Bryan Singer's Superman Returns back in 2006, which is when this site was created. Here we are seven years later.
It's time to start the 2013 summer movie season. Let's see what it holds for moviegoers, good or bad, big or small, hopefully it's a memorable year. From DC and Marvel superheroes to Kaiju and Jaeger to Fitzgerald, zombies and the apocalypse, there's a wide variety of exciting adventures that lie ahead. Enjoy your time at the cinema. We'll always be around to keep you excited for the next one, excited for that very first showing.