With many major industries having shut down and the world continuing to face a global health crisis like no other, the personal enjoyments of individuals across the world such as that found in embarking to the theater to catch the latest blockbuster film have nearly ceased to exist. With the early months of 2020 seeing major film releases either shifting closer to 2021 or simply skipping a theatrical release altogether in favor of streaming, few films still mark the remainder of the year. While the summer months might seem eerily dry of fresh premieres, there are still a number of exciting films set to debut on streaming services like Disney+ and Netflix as well as some that still hope to make it to the theater. With the current state the world is in, these dates may be subject to change.
“The Lovebirds” Director Michael Showalter, streaming May 22 (Netflix)
Animated films like “Scoob!” and “Trolls: World Tour” as well as the music-themed comedy “The High Note” are just some of the films opting for a digital release this year. Another feature hitting the small screen this summer is the romantic-comedy-turned-murder-mystery “The Lovebirds.” Comedians Kumail Nanjiani and Issa Rae play a young couple on the cusp of a turbulent break-up, and the film sees the two embroiled in a murder that will force them to clear their names and take stock of what each of them wants in their relationship. From the director behind the pseudo-biographical sleeper hit “The Big Sick” (also starring Nanjiani), “The Lovebirds” is set to be a hilarious, action-packed love story full of surprises.
“Artemis Fowl” Dir. Kenneth Branagh, streaming June 12 (Disney+)
Based on the popular fantasy book series of the same name, another major release shifting to the streaming realm early this summer is “Artemis Fowl.” Looking to merge the aesthetics of fantasy adventures like “Harry Potter” and “Men in Black” with its world-spanning adventure teaming a young prodigy with a crew of eccentric characters to rescue his kidnapped father, “Artemis Fowl” will introduce young viewers to its unique world as it debuts exclusively on Disney+. While adaptations like this one typically have trouble garnering a sizable audience in the theater, often running alongside franchises with an already-established fan-base at their will, director Kenneth Branagh’s newest project could manifest quite the fan following on the small screen.
“Tenet” Dir. Christopher Nolan, in Theaters July 17
Currently set to be one of the first films to release in theaters following an understandably turbulent spring season, the international espionage flick from “Inception” and “Interstellar” director Christopher Nolan is primed to be the film that opens theaters this summer. While social distancing concerns and general paranoia of leaving one’s home still exist, major studios like Warner Bros. and Disney hope to bring fans back to the theater seats very soon. Thus, the tent-pole, time-bending epic of “Tenet” shows no signs of debuting anywhere else but on the big screen in July. With details on the blockbuster fairly scarce at the moment, the film will see stars John David Washington and Robert Pattinson setting out to thwart a Russian diplomat (Kenneth Branagh) from enacting a destructive global crisis. Of course, like all of Nolan’s films, there are plenty more layers to unfold than just that.
“Wonder Woman 1984” Dir. Patty Jenkins, in Theaters August 14
Originally set to kick off the summer as the highly-anticipated follow-up to the 2017 film “Wonder Woman,” the 1980s-set sequel featuring the titular DC Comics heroine will now bow out this August. Just as the first film saw Gal Gadot’s Diana Prince jump into the epicenter of World War I, the sequel will see her tackle new threats during the Cold War. Beneath several shades of neon colors and a thick layer of ‘80s radio hits, Gadot’s immortal hero is set to do battle with media tycoon Maxwell Lord (Pedro Pascal) and frenemy Barbara Ann Minerva (Kristen Wiig), the latter who eventually becomes Diana’s comic-book arch-nemesis Cheetah. While the current state of the DC universe on the big screen might still be in flux, “Wonder Woman 1984” is set to continue the franchise with another massive superheroine hit.