We're almost exactly a third of the way through the year, and thanks to the announcement of the Cannes Film Festival line-up a couple weeks ago, we're now a little clearer on the timetable of some of the most anticipated films of the year. We know that "Cosmopolis," "Killing Them Softly," "On The Road," "Mud," "Rust And Bone," "Amour" and "The Paperboy," among others are done, and will be screening in only a few short weeks for critics, and U.S. releases, if not set already, can't be far behind. And the release schedule for the rest of the year is firming up fast, with films like "The Master" and "Seven Psychopaths" getting added to the calendar.
But what of the question marks that still remain? Of the major movies tentatively set for completion this year, but without firm release dates as yet, which will we actually see in theaters before the end of 2012? Which look likely to make it to the festival circuit, and which are creeping towards 2013? Below, we've investigated 15 key movies that we may or may be seeing in the next eight months. Anything else you're hoping might sneak into 2012? Let us know in the comments section.
What Is It? The much-anticipated, genre-blending adaptation of David Mitchell's tremendous novel, which spans stories from an 18th century scientific expeditation to a savage post-apocalyptic land. Directed by both the Wachowskis and Tom Twyker, it's got an all star cast including Tom Hanks, Halle Berry, Hugh Grant, Ben Whishaw, Jim Sturgess, Hugo Weaving, Jim Broadbent and Susan Sarandon, each of whom will play multiple roles.
What Are The Odds Of Seeing It This Year? Could go either way, we think. The film wrapped late last year, and it was tentatively set for an October 2012 release, according to author David Mitchell. But it still doesn't have an official place on the release calendar, and given the nature of the structure, and that the script came in at well over 200 pages long, we can't imagine this was this is the easiest post-production job. IMDB lists the film as getting a release in October and November in Europe, and while those dates aren't reliable, given the international financing on the picture, it's conceivable it could rollout overseas first (Warner Bros. has the domestic rights). Also, with the Wachowskis already planning to start lensing on their next effort "Jupiter Ascending" before the year is out, we presume that means "Cloud Atlas" will be done before they start work.
"The Company You Keep"
What Is It? Robert Redford's first on-camera role in five years, this sees him direct himself as a former radical forced on the run when a journalist exposes his past. Shia LaBoeuf co-stars along with an ace cast including Julie Christie, Brendan Gleeson, Nick Nolte, Chris Cooper, Stanley Tucci, Brit Marling, Anna Kendrick, Richard Jenkins, Terrence Howard, Sam Elliott, Susan Sarandon and Stephen Root.
What Are The Odds Of Seeing It This Year? Pretty fair, we'd say. Redford shot the film last year, he's an old pro at this , and rumors have pegged it to a premiere at TIFF in September. But does that mean it'll be seen by wider audiences this year? If it turns out to be awards fare, we're sure someone will pick it up for a November/December release. If it's more commercial or if it's as dull as "The Conspirator," it's easy to see it moving into 2013.
What Is It? The latest indie-minded genre-thriller from Brit Marling and "Sound of My Voice" director Zal Batmanglij, the story follows a security agent (Marling) who infiltrates an eco-terrorism group, whose members include Alexander Skarsgard, Ellen Page and Toby Kebbell, with Patricia Clarkson also in the cast.
What Are The Odds Of Seeing It This Year? Bearing in mind that "Sound Of My Voice" only made its way to theaters this past weekend, 16 months after it premiered at Sundance in 2011, not likely. A lot will depend on how that film does: if it outperforms the disappointing "Another Earth," than it may become more of a priority. The film is currently in the editing bay, but given the plethora of prestige fare this fall, it's a safe bet Fox Searchlight will put this on their 2013 calendar. However, a return to Sundance or a TIFF bow for the pic isn't out of the question.
"A Glimpse Inside The Mind Of Charles Swan III"
What Is It? Two comebacks in one, with bad-boy Charlie Sheen leading the first film in a decade from Roman Coppola ("CQ"), a character study of a 1970s graphic designer. Bill Murray, Jason Schwartzmann, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Aubrey Plaza and Katheryn Winnick co-star.
What Are The odds Of Seeing It This Year? We'd pegged this one for a possible Cannes premiere, given that that's where "CQ" started, but the film was nowhere to be found in the line-up. Given that the film doesn't have a distributor, we'd put good money on this turning up at TIFF (although Venice is also a distinct possibility), but the question is whether this takes its time to go into general release, or whether the heat from Sheen's comeback FX series "Anger Management" makes this an appetizing pick-up and priority for an eager distributor.
What Is It? Wong Kar-Wai's long in the works biopic of martial arts legend Ip Man. Tony Leung and Zhang Ziyi star.
What Are The Odds Of Seeing It This Year? Depends where you live. The film was recently slated with a December 18th release date in China, so if you're out that way, or are prepared to spring for a plane ticket, you likely won't be seeing this in 2013. A final round of shooting is schedule for May, and given how long Wong Kar-Wai was been working on this, we doubt he'll rush to meet any fall festival dates. Our best guess, is that like his films before, Cannes will be ready to roll out the red carpet next May, even if it's already opened in China (they do tend to bend the rules for favored directors).