Despicable Me 2 – July 3
‘Despicable Me’ was a huge out-of-nowhere surprise hit back in 2010 for Universal, and was Illumination Entertainment’s first ever film. Featuring great laughs and the memorable Minions, it proved that original content not from Pixar could top the box office. Coming out just two weeks after ‘Monsters University’ could present a bit of an issue for ‘Despicable Me 2’, but it should have the rest of July to bring in family audiences.
The Lone Ranger – July 3
Disney has struggled of late trying to launch new franchise fare into theatres, with previous efforts like ‘Prince of Persia: Sands of Time’, ‘Tron: Legacy’ and ‘John Carter’ all coming up short with critics and audiences alike. That being said, none of those involved the team from the ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ series, and even with the luke warm reception of the fourth film in that series, Disney is clearly banking that seeing Johnny Depp in a fresh role will bring audiences back.
Pacific Rim – July 12
‘Pacific Rim’ is one of the more original films that we are seeing this summer, all in the possibly rejuvenated Sci-Fi genre, but is also the exact kind of film that will teeter on the edge of “surprise-hit” or “giant-flop”. With the promise of insane amounts of action between giant underwater aliens and equally giant human operated robots, Guillermo del Toro is staking his reputation and possibly his career on ‘Pacific Rim’ being a hit.
Turbo – July 17
As the summer has worn on, animated features have become a little more prevalent, with ‘Monsters University’ having a shot at reaching $300 million at the box office and what looks like a solid sequel at the start of this month in ‘Despicable Me 2’, and that could be somewhat problematic for ‘Turbo’ from DreamWorks. The trailer looks full of laughs, but how a story about a supercharged slug trying to win the Indianapolis 500 plays out could be heavily impacted by how crowds embrace ‘Despicable Me 2’ at the start of the month and if they wait for ‘The Smurfs 2’ at the end of the month.
R.I.P.D – July 19
It appears that the July 19th weekend is a magnet for films based off of graphic novels as ‘R.I.P.D.’ joins ‘RED 2’ in that role for this weekend. Starring two somewhat bankable stars in Jeff Bridges and Ryan Reynolds, this is probably the one other movie this month, other than ‘Pacific Rim’, that no one can be sure what to expect from. Seemingly part Western, part Buddy Cop, part Horror, it will be hard to peg this movie until it comes out, but it definitely seems like it could get lost on this weekend.
RED 2 – July 19
When 2010’s ‘RED’ became a mild surprise hit, it became a bit of a no-brainer with the A-list talent involved that a sequel would somehow come out down the road. Fast forward to July of 2013 and here we are, with ‘RED 2’ coming out. While the original was based on a graphic novel, the sequel will feature a new storyline that is a continuation of the hilarity and hijinks of the original film.
The Wolverine – July 26
While 2009’s ‘X-Men Origins: Wolverine’ may have brought in almost $180 million in the North American box office, it also almost killed off the ‘X-Men’ franchise for 20th Century Fox. What is happening instead is a new standalone film that is not a direct sequel to that film, but more of a continuation of the original ‘X-Men’ trilogy, and one that is using one of the most respected Wolverine stories of all-time as its basis. ‘The Wolverine’ looks like a wonderful adaptation of a loved storyline, and Hugh Jackman seems to revel in this role as a man meant to be.
The Smurfs 2 – July 31
‘The Smurfs’ hold a specific place in my heart as a child of the 1980’s. I grew up with the ability to buy Smurfs characters in grocery store check outs and the cartoon is still one of my favourites to this day. That being said, 2011’s ‘The Smurfs’ was very much a film geared towards the younger generation of movie goers, as evidenced by the love that it carries in the heart of my then three-year old and now five-year old son, who absolutely adores everything Smurf-related. The first film was a hit on this same weekend two years ago, and there is little to doubt that the sequel will do the same again.
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