It’s been a minute since we’ve seen a truly iconic image of Paddington Bear, and considering that this year marks the 100th anniversary of the iconic character’s debut, it’s high time for Penguin Books to commemorate this momentous occasion with an anniversary edition of the popular children’s book series! And what better way to do so than by having the most handsome bear in the world sporting a purple suit and a tuxedo?
Just like Paddington, this year’s Cannes Film Festival will be celebrating its centenary in style, paying homage to its most influential films and their leading stars with a wealth of special events. One of the highlights of the festival is the star-studded Grand Prix award ceremony that will be attended by the biggest names in showbiz, international celebrities and dignitaries.
The 2019 edition of the prestigious festival will be held between May 12th and May 25th, and will be coming to an end just like the rest of the year, with the world-famous closing ceremony on the last night of the festival.
This year’s edition will feature some of the most anticipated films, with a selection of the hottest titles from Marvel, Disney, Universal and other major studios. There’ll also be a slew of indie films parading their wares to aspiring directors, producers and screenwriters hoping to make it big time in Hollywood. And let’s not forget about Cannes’ most honored guests, the stars who have been present at the very first festival back in 1923!
Here’s a look at the most anticipated films from Cannes 2019.
Toy Story 4
The Toy Story trilogy was one of the biggest and best-loved Pixar sagas, so it’s no great surprise that the company decided to give the characters one more go-around! Indeed, the Toy Story series is one of the most popular film franchises of all time, and the 2019 edition will see the return of the highly anticipated Toy Story 4, which is set for release on June 20th.
Based on the Pixar short film Wooden Ralph, Toy Story 4 will tell the story of a toys’ rebellion against their human master when he decides to chuck them out with the trash. While this poses a huge financial problem for him (he’s spent all his money on pricey upgrades), it will prove to be a windfall for the rebellious toys, as they end up finding new, creative and lucrative ways to make a living!
The film will be accompanied by a soundtrack featuring popular artists such as Miley Cyrus, Ed Sheeran and more, making it a must-have for music lovers. And for those hoping to find out more about the toys’ story behind the scenes, there’ll be a screening of the short film Ralph at the festival as part of the Toy Story 4 pre-fame, which will allow users to see how the short film and the full-length movie came to be.
The X-Men are one of the most influential and popular superhero teams ever, with a series of successful films bringing in millions upon millions of dollars at the box office. But just like any other franchise, the X-Men need an upgrade every now and then, and this year’s upcoming entry in the series will be getting the spectacular visual treatment courtesy of acclaimed director Ryan Coogler. (It probably goes without saying but if you’re not familiar, Ryan Coogler is the man behind the megasuperhit Black Panther, which recently became Marvel’s third highest-grossing movie ever!)
The new film is titled Dark Phoenix and sees the return of several fan-favorite characters including Jean Grey (Sophie Turner), Cyclops (Tye Sheridan) and Storm (Alexis Lande). Set to release on June 12th, Dark Phoenix will be accompanied by an original score by Kendrick Lamar and SZA, plus a soundtrack by Taylor Swift.
The creative team responsible for putting together this year’s edition of the festival have gone above and beyond in preparation for this year’s festivities, devoting a whole week to research and planning, getting quotes from experts and watching archival footage. The result is an exciting event schedule that will make even the most devoted fans of the legendary festival very happy. And who knows? With the right marketing and some good fortune, they just might make a film star out of one of these talented kids!
The Charlie’s Angels series has been around for almost 70 years now, with the most recent entry in the series being Charlie’s Angels: Always and Forever. But even back in the day, the popular female-led action franchise knew how to pull in the crowds with cliffhangers, high-octane stunts and lots of camp! This year’s upcoming installment in the series will be bringing back original cast members Elizabeth Banks, Cameron Diaz and Blake Lively, as well as introducing a new generation of fans to the mystifying world of Angels! (And who knows? With the right marketing and some good fortune, they just might make a film star out of one of these talented kids!)
The Lion King
Another highly anticipated Disney release making its way to the big screen this year is the glorious remake of The Lion King. It’ll be the company’s 16th animated feature, following on from major hits like Aladdin and Frozen, and will mark the English singer-songwriter Billie Eilish’s cinematic debut. (In related news, Billie just won a Grammy!)
Directed by Jon Favreau, The Lion King will see a CGI-animated lion named Simba inherit the throne of the majestic Pridelands and protect his pride against a murderous tyrant named Mufasa. Packed with spectacular visual effects, catchy songs and superb voice acting (minus the unfortunately overdubbed roars), this year’s addition to the King of the Jungle will be entertaining even the most ardent cynics. (And for those hoping to learn more about the character of Simba, there’ll be an opportunity to do so during the making of the film, with members of the press being invited to watch production!)
The Secret Life of Pets 2
Bringing up the rear of this year’s list is The Secret Life of Pets 2, the continuation of the hit 2016 film that saw pets given human-like emotions and made them relatable to audiences on a whole new level. Starring Lil Wayne, Mark Wahlberg and Evan Rachel Wood, the sequel will be released in theaters on August 23rd.
The first film was a phenomenon, earning $745 million at the box office worldwide on a $30 million budget, and going on to become one of the highest-grossing dog-related films ever. Naturally, the filmmakers behind the wildly successful movie franchise have some more tricks up their sleeve! (Or paw!)
Star Wars: Episode IX
Speaking of dogs, the ninth installment in the Star Wars saga will be featuring a number of adorable animals in key roles. While the film has yet to be given an official title, it’s widely known that it will be the finale to the legendary Skywalker saga. (Aunt Beru will be celebrating a very special anniversary this year – it’s been 70 years since she met her husband Luke!)
Filmed entirely on location, Star Wars: Episode IX will see the return of Harrison Ford, Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher and more, as well as the debut of a number of important characters. The film is already under the spotlight as fans are eagerly waiting to see what George Lucas has in store for them. (A trailer dropped last month – do you know what it is yet?)
One of the most eagerly anticipated animated films of the year is Paddington 2, the follow-up to the beloved 2013 comedy-adventure Paddington. The film will be directed by Paul King and will star Hugh Laurie, Sally Hawkins and Jim Broadbent, with Jason Solomons reprising his role as the voice of Paddington. (Yes, that Jason Solomons.)
Inspired by the true story of the marmalade cat who went on to become a celebrity in his own right, Paddington was originally released in theaters in 2015 and became one of the highest-grossing animated films of all time. Now, two years later, fans can finally see what happens next as Paddington 2 is set to hit theaters on February 14th.