Harry Potter, Clash of The Titans, Alice In Wonderland, Robin Hood, Toy Story 3, Tron and much, much more
The post-apocalyptic story
The Road, Dir John Hillcoat Adapted from Cormac McCarthy’s Pulitzer-winning novel, The Road stars Viggo Mortensen as a man protecting his son from scavengers and cannibals on a journey across a post-apocalyptic landscape.
Chances of a Dubai release: Looking good.
The monster movie
The Wolfman, Dir Joe Johnston
Vampires are so 2009. As Twilight: New Moon announced at the end of the year, the wolves have arrived to kick the bloodsuckers’ asses. Benicio Del Toro is the hairy protagonist.
Chances of a Dubai release: Hollywood and horror? A sure thing.
The Scorcese/ DiCaprio picture
Shutter Island, Dir Martin Scorcese
Gangs of New York and The Aviator may have been dodgy starts to the partnership, but The Departed has got us hopeful about this one. Leo DiCaprio is the US Marshal investigating the disappearance of a patient from a hospital for the criminally insane when a hurricane hits, sparking an inmate riot.
Chances of a Dubai release: We should jolly well hope so.
The book-to-film adaptation
The Lovely Bones, Dir Peter Jackson
Adapting Alice Sebold’s best-selling novel narrated by a murdered 14-year-old girl was never going to be a particularly easy task. But this is the man who adapted the entire Lord of the Rings trilogy, so you never know. Mark Wahlberg stars.
Chances of a Dubai release: It’ll probably make it… eventually
The Tim Burton adaptation
Alice in Wonderland, Dir Tim Burton
Burton and friends (Johnny Depp, Helena Bonham Carter) do a spooky, visually rich version of Lewis Carroll’s classic tale. There’s a fair amount of sinister in the book as it is, so Burton shouldn’t have too much trouble bringing it out. Expect to see lots of merchandise from the film adorning black-haired, stripy-tights-wearing teenage emo girls in 2010.
Chances of a Dubai release: Surely?
The kids’ fantasy franchise
Percy Jackson and the Olympians: Lightning Thief, Dir Chris Columbus
Not satisfied with the piles of cash he must’ve made directing a few Harry Potters, and not forgetting that he’s responsible for a couple of the biggest kids’ films of all time (Home Alone, Mrs Doubtfire), Columbus stands to make another wad with this big-screen version of the book series by Rick Riordan. It’s basically a child-friendly version of Greek myths, but boasts an awesome cast: Uma Thurman as Medusa, Rosario Dawson as Persephone and, bizarrely, Yorkshire lad Sean Bean as Zeus.
Chances of a Dubai release: Oh, it’ll be in the multiplex for months.
The remake of a classic
Clash of the Titans, Dir Louis Leterrier
More Greek mythology with this epic based on the myth of Perseus. The ’80s original used laughable stop-motion animation and caused a row over a mechanical owl (don’t ask). This is all CGI-type trickery and stars man of the moment Sam Worthington alongside Ralph Fiennes as Hades (we like), while Liam Neeson tries to outdo Sean Bean as Zeus.
Chances of a Dubai release: Special effects? Fighting? It’ll make it.
The incredibly late sequel
Wall Street 2, Dir Oliver Stone
Eh? It’s been 23 years since Oliver Stone’s stockbroker-dissing original, but what better time to revive ‘greed is good’ villain Gordon Gekko than now, a period in which we’re all primed to boo and hiss at anything slightly resembling a banker? Michael Douglas is joined by Shia LaBeouf, Josh Brolin and Susan Sarandon (plus a quick cameo from Charlie Sheen) in a story set around the 2008 stock market crash.
Chances of a Dubai release: ‘Don’t mention the recession’ seems to be the unwritten rule here, but who knows, maybe we’ll have a sense of humour about it by then…
The videogame-to-movie adaptation
Prince of Persia, Dir Mike Newell
It’s a bit odd when something that never had a plot in the first place becomes a film, but if it can work for Pirates of the Caribbean we don’t see why it can’t work for this. A long-haired and buff Jake Gyllenhaal (pictured, above) will be leaping about and stabbing people, but hopefully not landing on those annoying spikes and inadvertently ending the film.
Chances of a Dubai release: But of course.
The Russell Crowe epic
Robin Hood, Dir Ridley Scott
Apparently, you can never have too many Robin Hood movies. Russell Crowe dons the Hood and Matthew Macfadyen has his work cut out trying to step out of Alan Rickman’s shadow as The Sheriff of Nottingham. We’re not too convinced about Cate Blanchett as Maid Marian, either. Plus – and please shout if anyone else is thinking this – why?
Chances of a Dubai release: You bet your box office receipts.
The franchise that refuses to die
Nightmare on Elm Street, Dir Samuel Bayer
Bayer’s first feature (he’s spent his time directing music videos for the likes of Justin Timberlake and Green Day until now) is a wholly unnecessary remake of Wes Craven’s classic. If Johnny Depp doesn’t get swallowed by a bed, we’re not interested.
Chances of a Dubai release: It’ll probably be the highest-grossing film of the year.
The utterly pointless sequel
Sex and the City 2, Dir Michael Patrick King
Not content with ruining a perfectly good ending to the TV series with one film, the shoe-loving gang are back to stamp out any joyful lasting memories we had with another money-grabbing manoeuvre – a sequel. Our guess: Big and Carrie break up, Big and Carrie get back together. The end.
Chances of a Dubai release: Considering they didn’t even let the crew film in Abu Dhabi (Morocco doubles for it in the finished film), we’re thinking no.
The Pixar triumph
Toy Story 3, Dir Lee Unkrich
Everyone’s excited about this. All we know is that the toys are in peril again and Buzz gets reset to speak Spanish. And that it’ll be good. And that it’ll beat the pants off the fourth Shrek, also coming out in 2010.
Chances of a Dubai release: Couldn’t be better.
The Angelina Jolie kicking ass vehicle
Salt, Dir Phillip Noyce
Director Noyce worked with Jolie on The Bone Collector and has turned out a couple of biggies (Dead Calm, Rabbit-Proof Fence) so there’s a chance this will work. Jolie is the CIA agent who goes on the run after being accused of being a Russian spy.
Chances of a Dubai release: Big action means big thumbs up.
The TV-to-film transition
The A-Team, Dir Joe Carnahan
The cinema is alive with the spirit of the ’80s in 2010 (see Clash of the Titans) as The A-Team also receives an update. We hear it’s trying to be a brutal actioner in the vein of the Bourne series, which seems a bit silly, but it’s an interesting cast, with Liam Neeson as Hannibal and Bradley Cooper as Face. But no Mr T? Humph.
Chances of a Dubai release: It couldn’t be dumber, so we think yes.
The chance for redemption
The Last Airbender, Dir M Night Shyamalan
The Happening was a career-ending movie if ever we saw one. The plants are turning against us! Just awful. But somehow Shyamalan has got another gig (The Sixth Sense seems to count for a lot), and with people’s favourite Dev Patel on his side there just may be a chance at redemption. It’s a live-action adaptation of an animated TV series where people known as benders (not the best start) are able to control the elements. It had better be good.
Chances of a Dubai release: Fair.
The next Harry Potter
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part One, Dir David Yates
It may be the final book, but it ain’t the final film. After all, there was no way Rowling’s doorstop was going to fit into a non-numb-bum-friendly timeframe. Potter fans are unlikely to be disappointed.
Chances of a Dubai release: Considering The Half-Blood Prince is still in Dubai cinemas after roughly an eternity, it’s a yes.
The new Christopher Nolan
Inception, Dir Christopher Nolan
The plot is still a secret, but a stellar cast (Leo D again, Marion Cotillard, Ellen Page, Cillian Murphy) and a near-perfect track record for Nolan mean it’s promising. A sci-fi affair set for a summer release? We can smell the success already.
Chances of a Dubai release: Fingers crossed.
The nostalgia manipulator
Tron Legacy, Dir Joseph Kosinski
The first (and unmistakably ’80s, again) Tron has quite the cult following. The sequel sees Jeff Bridges reprise his role as a computer programmer caught in his own computer system. Tron aficionados will no doubt be very excited. Everyone else will not.
Chances of a Dubai release: Unless we want hordes of very angry men in their late twenties ripping up the multiplexes, it had better get one.
The superhero film
The Green Hornet, Dir Michel Gondry
Michel Gondry’s latest flick promises to be an offbeat take on the traditional superhero genre, seeing as the rather soft-of-stomach Seth Rogen is playing the masked avenger.
Chances of a Dubai release: If it’s got a cape, it’s in the cinema.
Shrek Forever After, Dir Mike Mitchell
It’s meant to be the fourth and final in the series, but we sincerely hope not. After challenging an evil dragon, rescuing a beautiful princess and saving your in-laws’ kingdom, what’s an ogre to do? Well, if you’re Shrek, you suddenly wind up a domesticated family man. Instead of scaring villagers away like he used to, a reluctant Shrek now agrees to autograph pitch forks.
Chances of a Dubai release: If this isn’t released in Dubai, we’ll be amazed. It’s a kids’ classic loved by adults alike so we bet it’ll be on our screens in 2010.