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May 19, 2023

Get Ready for These Blockbusters Coming in 2023

The fastest way to improve your screenwriting is to learn from the best. And the second half of 2023 looks set to be an exceptional year from cinema.

Let’s go over some of the biggest films coming out in 2023, why you should be looking forward to them, and what we might be able to learn from them.

Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse (June)

This is the long awaited sequel to Spider-Man: Into the Spider-verse. The character of Spider-Man is incredibly popular, but what impressed most about the original film was its unique art style and innovative approach towards the superhero genre.

An animated Spider-Man swinging across a cityscape. The colors are strong and contrast a lot.
Spiderman Across the Universe is an animated adventure unlike previous films about the character

However, in 2023 the world of big-budget superhero films is much different as both the Marvel and DC cinematic universes are diving headfirst into multiverse stories.

Will the talented team behind the first film be able to pull off the same trick twice, or will superhero fatigue damage this long-awaited sequel?

Elemental (June)

Pixar films are king for learning about story structure. To this day Inside Out remains one of the best examples of traditional 3 act stories. 

Elemental tells a high-concept story about a world made of beings that embody fundamental elements like fire and water, and how the cultural differences between the communities result in an unlikely relationship between the two central protagonists. 

Pixar have a sterling track record of producing fantastic animated films that are fit for the whole family but also provide serious meat on the bones. There’s just as much chance the adults in the theater will be left in tears as the kids. There’s no doubt that Elemental will continue that trend.

Mission Impossible: Dead Reckoning Part 1 (July)

Action cinema has always been popular, but in the post-pandemic world its experiencing something of a renaissance led primarily by Tom Cruise, the star of the Mission Impossible films. 

Known for the real thrilling stunts that make up the Mission Impossible central action setpieces, Dead Reckoning comes off the back of Mission Impossible: Fallout which cemented Cruise as one of the greatest living action stars willing to put life and limb on the line in order to do an insane stunt. 

While some action films have a reputation of being dumb, there is so much to learn from how story and action setpiece intertwine in these summer blockbusters, and there’s nowhere better to learn it than from the minds of director Christopher McQuarrie and lead Tom Cruise.

Barbie (July)

This July also plays host to two of the year’s biggest auteur pieces that is sure to drive the majority of online discussion. The first is Barbie from director Greta Gerwig.

Gerwig is known for placing interesting, complex, and nuanced women in the center of her previous films and crafting superb dramas. That makes the choice of her next film as Barbie a little interesting. After all, isn’t Barbie emblematic of some of the most regressive depictions of women in popular culture? 

This is why so many people are excited for Gerwig’s approach to Barbie. Though recent trailers indicate that it will be a fun ride that should hopefully appeal to the whole family, there is also an expectation to see Gerwig’s mind turn over one of culture’s biggest feminine icons and how it fits into modernity. 

Oppenheimer (July)

Launching on the same day as Barbie is Oppenheimer, the biopic of the famous scientist, from none other than Christopher Nolan, creator of some of modern cinema’s most beloved classics. 

Nolan is known for taking complex subject matter and experimenting with form to tell stories in unique and brave ways. Usually this is in the domain of sci-fi, but audiences are now eager to see what Nolan does in his first biopic about the creator of the atom bomb. 

Like most of Nolan’s films, no doubt he will get experimental with how he represents time on screen, and on account of his love of practical effects and the film’s subject matter, expect to see some of 2023’s biggest explosions within.

Next Goal Wins (September)

The summer blockbuster season is often followed by the oncoming awards-season contenders. The first possible choice is Next Goal Wins, the story of a Dutch football coach who travels to American Samoa to improve the odds of the world’s so-called worst football team. 

What promises to be a comedic sports drama may well be elevated by its director and writer Taika Waititi, the current comedy darling of the cinematic world. Known for an askew sense of humor and an ability to turn the absurd into great jokes, expectations are high for this film to do well in the following year's awards.

The Exorcist (October)

Just in time for Halloween comes The Exorcist, the remake/sequel of the 70s classic. The directors of this film are certainly brave tackling one of the holy grails of horror cinema and expectations are high for the legacy to be continued in proper fashion.

If you are in any way interested in horror this is the must-see film of the year. If it’s brilliant, this movie will tell us a lot about how to reinterpret the classics of cinema and bring it into the modern day. If not so good, it may serve as a cautionary tale for all of us. Regardless, there’s little doubt that this film will be anything less than interesting.

Dune: Part Two (November)

Coming off the heels of Dune in 2021, this sequel was fast-tracked into production after the original’s tremendous success. Directed by Denis Villenueve, another one of modern cinema’s masters, this sequel will complete the story started in the original film and perhaps chart a path forward for the franchise’s future. 

The main characters from Dune, a man and a woman, stare off into the distance.i
Dune Part Two is coming to cinemas in November after the success of the first part

Dune tells the story of dynastic families far in the future competing over the titular resource abundant on the desert planet Arrakis that can power spaceships to chart the stars. The first film has an epic scope with some of the most opulent sets and setpieces Hollywood has to offer. Dune: Part Two will conclude the story in (hopefully) magnificent fashion and make for a great day out at the movies. 

To re-cap on the Dune series, here is our breakdown of Part one.

Napoleon (November)

Hollywood loves historical biopics. While the summer will see Nolan’s take on Oppenheimer, the winter sees the launch of Ridley Scott’s biopic of the famous French general and later emperor.

Large-scale interpretations of the Napoleonic era have been sadly missing from Hollywood cinema for some time. It's great to see the elder statesman of modern cinema Ridley Scott get a chance to do the story justice. Expect large-scale battles, intense politics, a killer performance by Joaquin Phoenix, and quite possibly an Oscar in the near future.

The Killer (November)

Finally, the other major Oscar contender of November is the latest from David Fincher. Known for his fastidious attention to detail and dripping sense of dread he can elicit through precise cinematography and shot composition, The Killer, based on the graphic novel of the same name, promises to be an exciting dip into the criminal underworld of assassins and crime bosses.

Additionally, this is Netflix’s big release of the year, so while this likely will come to theaters, you will be able to enjoy it from the comfort of your own home. It’s worth keeping an eye on the kinds of stories streamers like Netflix invest in, because there’s a pretty good chance that being a professional writer means working with these new titans of the Hollywood landscape.

What can we learn from the best films of 2023?

One of the best ways to learn about film is to make the pilgrimage to the cinema and watch finished productions. With any luck, some of these big films to come in 2023 will provide the spark of inspiration needed to boost your work to the next level.

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Get Ready for These Blockbusters Coming in 2023
Alex D. Reid

Alex is a professional screenwriter who loves writing horror. He won the horror category at Austin Film Festival for his screenplay Delirium in 2019 and is currently studying for a Ph.D in English Literature with a focus on the horror genre

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