With a new year we are brought many a new prospects for our entertainment purposes and in looking forward to 2019 one thing is more than clear and that is the fact audiences will have an abundance of interesting material to choose from. In setting out to make a most anticipated list I actually began with some fifty-something films I found interesting or knew I'd care to see based solely on surface factors such as director, cast members, or synopsis. It pains me that movies like John Crowley's follow-up to Brooklyn, Goldfinch, won't get acknowledged here nor will James Mangold's Ford v. Ferrari, Danny Boyle's Beatles project, or Joe Wright's The Woman in the Window, but that is the way these things work. That is without mentioning the long list of blockbusters that won't appear here-including Glass, Shazam!, Captain Marvel, John Wick: Chapter 3, The Lion King, and the Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle sequel-as I'm certainly excited to see what each of those deliver, but am not anticipating any with the fervor my top ten bring.

Some of these certainly lie right outside the top ten while others-such as Dumbo, Aladdin, X-Men: Dark Phoenix, and Frozen 2-that feel important solely for their bigness and not necessarily because I'm personally looking forward to what any of them hold in store for us. Sure, I'll see all of those and am curious about the reactions most will garner (especially Phoenix), but if I wanted to highlight films I'm genuinely excited to see that might not be in the mainstream conversation would have been to include titles such as James Gray's Ad Astra starring Brad Pitt and Tommy Lee Jones about an astronaut who travels to the outer edges of the solar system to find his missing father and unravel a mystery that threatens the survival of our planet. Umm...yes please! That sounds fantastic! There's also Marielle Heller's Fred Rogers biopic starring Tom Hanks now officially titled A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood, Hereditary director Ari Aster's follow-up to his breakout debut with Midsommar, Harmony Korine's made-for-McConaughey movie The Beach Bum, Greta Gerwig's Little Women and Elizabeth Banks' Charlie's Angels re-makes, as well as writer Andrea Berloff's (Straight Outta Compoton) directorial debut in The Kitchen, and a pair of Are You Afraid of the Dark? and Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark adaptations I'm equally intrigued by. There are plenty others of course, but there just isn't enough space in the world for everything that sounds promising in 2019 and so, here are ten I definitely can't wait to watch and know that I'll definitely be seeing this calendar year.

10. Gemini Man - Director Ang Lee’s upcoming science-fiction/action-thriller Gemini Man had been languishing in Hollywood development for more than two decades. Thanks to modern technology though, the film, which wrapped production last July, will finally see the light of day this October. The film, which has more than a handful of writers credited, follows an over-the-hill hitman facing off against a younger clone of himself and stars Will Smith in the lead role with Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Clive Owen, and Benedict Wong in supporting roles. (10/4)

9. Fast & Furious presents: Hobbs & Shaw - A spin-off of The Fast and the Furious franchise that might have simultaneously broken-up the Furious family, Hobbs & Shaw sees Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson's US Diplomatic Security Agent Luke Hobbs forming an unlikely alliance with Jason Statham's Deckard Shaw. The two had some electric chemistry when they were finally allowed to face one another on screen in 2017's The Fate of the Furious, but no one expected-least of all Vin Diesel and Tyrese (apparently)-said chemistry to result in an actual stand-alone movie where the hardened secret agent and former villain would team-up to fight what I can only assume is Idris Elba's baddie, Brixton, who no doubt has some nefarious plot to steal a valued piece of technology. Vanessa Kirby, Eiza González, and Eddie Marsan co-star. (8/2)

8. The Irishman - Martin Scorsese directs Robert De Niro, Al Pacino, Joe Pesci, and Harvey Keitel in a crime drama that chronicles a mob hitman as he recalls his possible involvement in the slaying of Jimmy Hoffa. That's really all that needs to be said about this film or what will otherwise become known as the most expensive original Netflix movie to date (it carries a $140 million price tag), but it's really all that can be said right now as there isn't much else known about the film including when it will be released or how. I suspect Netflix will give Scorsese the same treatment it has Alfonso Curaon's Roma this year, but only time will tell. Needless to say, regardless of how I eventually see it, a new Scorsese picture is always something to be excited about. (TBD)

7. Toy Story 4 - When the final reel of 2010's Toy Story 3 finally finished it seemed there was no better or more poignant way to complete a trilogy that had begun some fifteen years earlier and revolutionized animation as we know it, but as Pixar has become more and more reliant on sequels to the films that originally made them the powerhouse they are today it seemed inevitable we would one day get another chapter in the sage of Buzz and Woody no matter how much I wished for Pixar to keep that book closed. So, why is there excitement then for this fourth chapter in which a new toy called "Forky" joins Woody and the gang on a road trip that reveals how big the world can be for a toy? Well, because it's still a Toy Story film and because I'm intrigued as to where new director Josh Cooley might take the story and what screenwriters Stephany Folsom and Will McCormack have come up with that might warrant another trip behind the curtain. (6/21)

6. Joker - Despite his films typically receiving more negative press than unanimous praise, I've been a fan of director Todd Phillips since he knocked me out with a double dose of Frat Pack greatness in 2003 and 2004 with Old School and the Starky & Hutch movie re-boot before going on to become better known for his Hangover trilogy. While that trilogy may have become more and more mediocre over the course of three films in terms of story, they vastly improved Phillips' cinematic eye while the filmmaker's subversive take on the material at least led to interesting outlets. And while the character of the Joker arguably will suffer more than he might prosper from an origin story, with a screenplay by Phillips and Scott Silver (The Fighter) along with a cast that features the likes of Joaquin Phoenix and Robert De Niro it's hard to argue one isn't at least intrigued by the promise if not excited by the idea. (10/4)

5. Star Wars: Episode IX - It's hard to believe the monumental finale of the Skywalker saga only ranks in the middle of my ten most anticipated features for the year in which it will debut, but after 2017's The Last Jedi both excitement and expectations have been severely tempered for this last installment. If it's not obvious already, I was not a fan of Rian Johnson's middle chapter in what is seemingly the third and final trilogy in the main series of Star Wars films as it almost irreverently disregarded everything writer/director J.J. Abrams set-up in The Force Awakens. And while Abrams is back to complete this trilogy he began four years ago in 2015, one cannot help but feel much of the air has already left the room despite the fact we haven't seen a single shot or piece of footage from the upcoming film. Here's to hoping lowered expectations lead to greater reward. (12/20)

4. It: Chapter Two - The success of the first half of director Andy Muschietti’s adaptation of Stephen King's IT afforded him the luxury of an A-list ensemble and plenty of time to develop and shoot this sequel we kind of already knew was happening even before that first film blew all expectations out of the water; going on to score the largest opening weekend for an R-rated movie ever, then continuing to perform week after week ultimately taking in over $700 million worldwide.  Jessica Chastain, James McAvoy, and Bill Hader lead the cast of IT Chapter Two as the sequel picks up with the characters from the first film as adults twenty-seven years later. While not too much is known about the follow-up just yet, we obviously know from the book and previous mini-series that a devastating phone call brings "The Losers Club" back together and back to Derry, Maine. (9/6)

3. Us - Get Out was my favorite film of 2017 and so it goes without saying that I can't wait to see what writer/director Jordan Peele has up his sleeve next. Set in present day along the iconic Northern California coastline, Us, stars Lupita Nyong’o as Adelaide Wilson, a woman returning to her childhood home with her husband, Gabe (Black Panther’s Winston Duke), and their two children (Shahadi Wright Joseph, Evan Alex) for an idyllic summer getaway. Haunted by an unexplainable and unresolved trauma from her past and compounded by a string of eerie coincidences, Adelaide feels her paranoia elevate to high-alert as she grows increasingly certain that something bad is going to befall her family. The teaser trailer released on Christmas day absolutely piqued my intrigue and I need to neither see nor hear anything more about this movie before walking into the theater opening night. Elisabeth Moss, Tim Heidecker, Cali Sheldon, and Noelle Sheldon co-star. (3/22)

2. Once Upon a Time in Hollywood - Quentin Tarantino's latest film is set in the late sixties and focuses on Charles Manson victim Sharon Tate's next door neighbor, fictional TV actor Rick Dalton (Leonardo DiCaprio) and his stunt double, Rick Booth (Brad Pitt). Though both DiCaprio and Pitt have worked with Tarantino before, this will be the first time the two mega-stars will share the screen. While Dalton and Booth's odyssey will undoubtedly serve as the focus of the film, Tarantino has gone on record saying this is the closest thing he's done to Pulp Fiction since that breakout film of his twenty-five years ago. Naturally, this leads one to believe Once Upon a Time in Hollywood will have the kind of sprawling narrative and ensemble cast of characters that film sported. Speaking of ensembles, the film will co-star Al Pacino, Damien Lewis, Dakota Fanning, James Marsden, Lena Dunham, Timothy Olyphant, Kurt Russell, Tim Roth, and Michael Madsen with Margot Robbie taking on the role of  Tate and Justified's Damon Herrimon taking on the role of Manson (a role he'll also be playing in Netflix's second season of the David Fincher-produced Mindhunter). (8/9)

1. Avengers: Endgame - Not since maybe The Dark Knight Rises have I anticipated a film more. Sure, The Last Jedi was an exciting build-up as was the anticipation for Infinity War, but both of those films were chapters in an ongoing story whereas Endgame, as with Rises, is the finale of something special; something that has come to define a large portion of my life and growth alongside cinema. Up until last month though, not even a title was know for what this fourth Avengers film might end up being and now, as we have the title and have actually seen images from the film, it's still hard to believe it actually exists, that things will in fact be coming to an end, and that we will be able to watch the culmination of all of this in theaters in less than four months time. There's really nothing more to say, Avengers: Endgame is easily my most anticipated movie of the year. It's the movie I absolutely must see in 2019 and would pick as the only movie to see if I were forced into such circumstances. Let the countdown begin! (4/26)

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