WHEN: June 2
WHO: Gal Gadot, Chris Pine, Connie Nielsen, Robin Wright, David Thewlis
WHAT: The fourth movie in DC’s cinematic connected universe, Wonder Woman proudly boasts a credit Marvel hasn’t claimed in 15 movies: the first major female-led superhero movie.
WHY: So far, all three DC movies have underwhelmed, but Gadot was one of the best things about Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice and seems born for the action spotlight.
THE FIRST EPIC MOVIE
WHEN: June 2
WHO: Ed Helms, Kevin Hart, Thomas Middleditch, Nick Kroll, Jordan Peele
WHAT: The beloved book series makes the leap to the big screen, with the goofy tale of a school principal (Helms) hypnotized into thinking he’s a superhero getting the computer-animated treatment.
WHY: Helms, Hart, and Kroll have all proven how well-suited their voices are for animation, and Middleditch and Peele are known for their ad-libbing prowess. If the material is as good as the cast, Captain Underpants could be one if the sleeper hits of the summer.
WHEN: June 9
WHO: Tom Cruise, Sofia Boutella, Annabelle Wallis, Jake Johnson, Russell Crowe
WHAT: Just as the Marvel Cinematic Universe has begotten connected universes for DC superheroes and giant monsters like Godzilla and Kong, Universal is plumbing their archives to reboot the original connected movie universe: classic monsters. After 2014’s Dracula Untold (which was intended to launch the new universe) got a lukewarm reception, Universal repositioned their next effort, The Mummy, as the launching pad for a series of tentpole pictures that will soon also include remakes of The Invisible Man, The Creature from the Black Lagoon, and Bride of Frankenstein.
WHY: One thing Cruise is tremendously consistent with is attaching himself to great movies. He has around four hits to every one misfire — and considering his last movie was the atrocious Jack Reacher: Never Go Back, that bodes very well for The Mummy.
ALL EYEZ ON ME
WHEN: June 16
WHO: Demetrius Shipp, Jr., Danai Gurira, Lauren Cohan, Jamie Hector, Jamal Woolard
WHAT: Iconic rapper/actor/activist Tupac Shakur gets the full bio-pic treatment, with a lead performance from Shipp, Jr.
WHY: Over the years, directors like Antoine Fuqua and John Singleton were attached. The final choice for director, Benny Boom, has shot over 200 music videos, which should bring an interesting perspective to Shakur’s story. (Fun fact: Wooland, who played The Notorious B.I.G. in the 2009 biopic Notorious, reprises his role in All Eyez on Me.)
WHEN: June 16
WHO: Owen Wilson, Cristela Alonzo, Larry the Cable Guy, Armie Hammer, Bonnie Hunt
WHAT: Lightning McQueen (Wilson), an old model in a world of newer race cars, suffers a brutal crash. With the help of a race technician (Alonzo), McQueen works on recovering in time for a comeback at the Florida 500.
WHY: After the massively underrated Cars and the massively dumb Cars 2, Pixar is geared to conclude Lightning’s trilogy with a worthy victory lap. If the marketing is anything to be believed, they’ve probably done it.
WHEN: June 16
WHO: Scarlett Johansson, Kate McKinnon, Jillian Bell, Ilana Glazer, Zoë Kravitz
WHAT: Following the all-female remake of Ghostbusters but arriving before the all-female remakes Ocean’s 8 and The ExpendaBelles, the all-female remake of Very Bad Things focuses on five friends who accidentally kill a male stripper during a wild bachelorette party.
WHY: McKinnon is one of the most powerful forces working in comedy right now, and Bell and Glazer aren’t far off from her. Between the three of them, and Johansson bringing any actual acting chops needed, Rough Night could become one of the comedies of the summer.
WHEN: June 28
WHO: Ansel Elgort, Kevin Spacey, Lily James, Jamie Foxx, Jon Hamm
WHAT: A getaway driver (Elgort) is tempted with what would be one last job, working a heist for a criminal kingpin (Spacey) that obviously doesn’t go as smoothly as expected.
WHY: Edgar Wright previously wrote and directed Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz, and Scott Pilgrim vs. the World. Add a killer soundtrack and Kevin Spacey into the mix, and Baby Driver should go down as one of Wright’s best.
WHEN: June 30
WHO: Will Ferrell, Amy Poehler, Jason Mantzoukas, Nick Kroll, Jeremy Renner
WHAT: When parents Scott (Ferrell) and Kate (Poehler) suddenly need money to put their daughter through college, they start an underground casino in their basement with Scott’s friend Frank (Mantzoukas).
WHY: Despite being two of the biggest stars to come out of post ’80s Saturday Night Live, Ferrell and Poehler have only appeared together in one movie, 2007’s Blades of Glory. Joining forces on equal footing in The House should make for even stronger comedy.