With “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2” already taking the box office by storm — and this week’s “Alien: Covenant” poised to give it a run for its money — let’s hear it for upcoming movies starring Scottish thespian Brian Cox as Winston Churchill, Australian newcomer Danielle Macdonald as an aspiring rapper, and Diane Lane on a soul-searching trip to France!
Seriously, though — or not, more accurately — true to form for the summer season, the vast majority of releases over the next few months are prone to sequels, reboots, special effects, action and comedy. For every “All Eyez on Me” (the Atlanta-made Tupac Shakur biopic) or “Dunkirk” (a World War II drama from director Christopher Nolan), there are any number of other comic-book superhero vehicles or innocuous animated films.
As always, opening dates are subject to change, but here’s a rundown of what’s on tap between now and the end of August.
“Baywatch.” Dwayne Johnson and Zac Efron hit the beach and butt heads as lifeguards who uncover a drug-smuggling plot in an action comedy based on the ’90s TV show. Partly filmed in and on Savannah and Tybee Island.
“Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales.” Johnny Depp is back for a fifth turn as Captain Jack Sparrow. Also returning: Keira Knightley, Orlando Bloom and Geoffrey Rush, joined by new villain Javier Bardem.
“War Machine.” In this absurdist satire about the war in Afghanistan (based on the nonfiction book “The Operators”), Brad Pitt portrays a bombastic four-star general.
“Wonder Woman.” The DC Comics superheroine is called to duty during World War I. Patty Jenkins (“Monster”) directs Gal Gadot in the title role, supported by Chris Pine and Robin Wright. In 3-D and Imax.
“Churchill.” Brian Cox stars as Winston Churchill (opposite Miranda Richardson as his wife) in this drama – not so much a biopic about the British prime minister as a thriller set during the week preceding D-Day in 1944.
“Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie.” Kevin Hart and Ed Helms lead the voice cast in an animated film about a pair of fourth-graders who hypnotize their principal into thinking he’s a superhero.
“The Mummy.” Whether it owes more to the old Boris Karloff version or the newer Brendan Fraser versions, this reboot of the classic horror story spans from the ancient Middle East to modern-day London. Tom Cruise stars.
“My Cousin Rachel.” In a remake of the 1952 Olivia de Havilland film (based on a Daphne du Maurier novel), Rachel Weisz inherits the role of an alluring, possibly deadly Victorian-era woman.
“Paris Can Wait.” Diane Lane plays the wife of a Hollywood producer (Alec Baldwin), who discovers a new sense of self while vacationing in France. Francis Ford Coppola’s wife, Eleanor, makes her directorial debut.
“Megan Leavey.” The true story of a young Marine corporal (Kate Mara) and her heroic actions in Iraq with a military combat dog. Edie Falco and Common co-star. A few scenes were shot in Rome, Ga.
“It Comes at Night.” Joel Edgerton portrays a husband and father trying to protect his family in the wake of a horrific plague. When a stranger arrives at their isolated cabin, chills ensue.
“All Eyez on Me.” Filmed in Atlanta, this musical biopic features newcomer Demetrius Shipp Jr., who bears an uncanny resemblance to the slain rapper, actor, poet and “cultural icon” Tupac Shakur.
“Cars 3.” In this animated sequel, Lightning McQueen (voiced by Owen Wilson) must prove himself against a new breed of race cars. Other voices belong to Armie Hammer, Kerry Washington and Cheech Marin.
“The Book of Henry.” A family drama starring Naomi Watts as a single mother of two young sons (Jaeden Lieberher, Jacob Tremblay), who become embroiled with their troubled next-door neighbors.
“Rough Night.” Scarlett Johansson stars in a comedy about a bachelorette party that takes a “hilariously dark turn” when the hired male stripper ends up dead. Kate McKinnon and Demi Moore also appear.
“47 Meters Down.” While vacationing in Mexico on a shark-diving excursion, two sisters (Mandy Moore, Claire Holt) become trapped in a protective cage at the bottom of the sea.
“Transformers: The Last Knight.” The fifth chapter in director Michael Bay’s robotic action series involves auto mechanic Mark Wahlberg, astronomer Anthony Hopkins, Oxford scholar Laura Haddock … and medieval history.
“The Hero.” Sam Elliott plays a faded star of Western movies, whose cancer diagnosis forces him to face his own mortality, thus confronting some of his personal and professional demons.
“Baby Driver.” A crime caper shot in and around Atlanta, about a young getaway driver (Ansel Elgort) who wants to go straight, to the chagrin of his ruthless boss (Kevin Spacey). Co-starring Jamie Foxx and Jon Hamm.
“Despicable Me 3.” In this 3-D animated sequel, Steve Carell returns to voice the reformed supervillain Gru — plus a new role as his long-lost twin brother, Dru. Kristen Wiig, Trey Parker and Julie Andrews provide other voices.
“The Beguiled.” Director Sofia Coppola remakes a 1971 Civil War drama about a Union soldier taken in by a group of Southern women. Colin Farrell and Nicole Kidman re-create the original Clint Eastwood and Geraldine Page roles.
“The House.” A comedy featuring Will Ferrell and Amy Poehler as parents who finance their daughter’s college education by opening an illicit casino in a neighbor’s basement.
“Spider-Man: Homecoming.” The superhero (Tom Holland) battles a new villain (Michael Keaton) in the latest Marvel Comics-based action movie. Chris Evans and Robert Downey Jr. co-star. Shot in and around Atlanta.
“The Big Sick.” A romantic comedy-drama about the culture clash surrounding an aspiring Pakistani comedian (Kumail Nanjiani) and his American girlfriend (Zoe Kazan).
“Patti Cakes.” Australian newcomer Danielle Macdonald plays a downtrodden New Jersey girl who dreams of becoming a hip-hop singer in this slice-of-life comedy-drama.
“War for the Planet of the Apes.” In the third installment of this franchise, Andy Serkis reprises his role as the ape Caesar, now squaring off against a human army led by Woody Harrelson.
“Maudie.” A true story about the romance between Canadian folk artist Maud Lewis (Sally Hawkins) and the gruff recluse (Ethan Hawke) who initially hires her as his housekeeper.
“Dunkirk.” Director Christopher Nolan’s World War II drama casts newcomer Fionn Whitehead as a young Allied soldier — alongside a stellar ensemble including Kenneth Branagh, Mark Rylance and Tom Hardy. In Imax.
“Girls Trip.” Lifelong friends Queen Latifah, Jada Pinkett Smith, Regina Hall and Tiffany Haddish cut loose on vacation in a comedy that’s described as equal parts “Sex and the City” and “The Hangover.”
“A Ghost Story.” Billed not as a horror movie but as a “romantic fantasy,” this film casts Casey Affleck as a spectral figure attempting to reconnect with his grieving widow (Rooney Mara).
“Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets.” Director Luc Besson’s sci-fi spectacle co-stars Dane DeHaan and Cara Delevingne, with Clive Owen, Rutger Hauer, Rihanna and Herbie Hancock among the eclectic supporting cast.
“Atomic Blonde.” Charlize Theron continues her transition from Oscar-winning dramatic actress to commercial action heroine as a British secret agent/lethal assassin. Adapted from the graphic novel “The Coldest City.”
“The Emoji Movie.” An animated “app-venture” involving the emoji residents of a smartphone universe known as Textopolis. Among the voice cast: T.J. Miller, Anna Faris and James Corden.
“An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power.” A follow-up to the Oscar-winning 2006 documentary about former Vice President Al Gore’s global campaign against climate change.
“The Dark Tower.” A futuristic thriller, based on a Stephen King novel, pitting Idris Elba (as the Gunslinger) opposite Matthew McConaughey (as the Man in Black) — with nothing less than the fate of the universe at stake.
“Detroit.” Oscar-winning director Kathryn Bigelow depicts the true story of a police raid in 1967 Detroit that led to one of the biggest citizen uprisings in U.S. history. John Krasinski and Anthony Mackie head the cast.
“Step.” This documentary, an audience favorite at Sundance, chronicles senior year for members of a girls’ high-school step-dancing team in inner-city Baltimore, and their hopes of attending college.
“The Glass Castle.” Based on Jeannette Walls’ best-selling memoir, Brie Larson plays a young woman coming of age in a dysfunctional family. Naomi Watts and Woody Harrelson are her eccentric parents.
“The Nut Job 2: Nutty by Nature.” In this animated sequel, a menagerie of animals bands together to save their habitat from evil developers. Featuring the voices of Will Arnett, Maya Rudolph and Jackie Chan.
“Logan Lucky.” Director Steven Soderbergh casts Channing Tatum and Adam Driver as brothers who plan a heist during a NASCAR race. With Daniel Craig, Hilary Swank, Seth MacFarlane and Katie Holmes. Filmed in Douglasville.
“The Hitman’s Bodyguard.” Straight-arrow Secret Service agent Ryan Reynolds is assigned to protect notorious assassin Samuel L. Jackson in this buddy comedy. Salma Hayek and Gary Oldman also appear.
“Wind River.” A rookie FBI agent (Elizabeth Olsen) and a local game tracker (Jeremy Renner) join forces to investigate the mysterious murder of a young girl on a remote Native American reservation.
“Leap!” An animated film about a young orphan girl in Paris, pursuing her dream to become a ballet dancer. The voice cast includes Elle Fanning, Kate McKinnon and Mel Brooks.