Independence Day 2 and two more installments in the Amazing Spider-Man franchise were among the films that gained official release dates last week, but not every upcoming blockbuster includes aliens, superheroes, explosive action, 3D or some combination of all four elements (see: Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy). Some feature things like troubled and wealthy studs, innocent college virgins - and a slew of kinky acts in (and out of) the bedroom.
Yes, Focus Features and Universal plan to unleash (sorry, that was a terrible pun) the Fifty Shades of Grey movie in theaters during the 2014 Summer Blockbuster Season. The film adaptation of E.L. James' Twilight fan fiction-turned best-selling book will begin screening on August 1st, 2014, which (Coincidentally? Ironically?) is the same day that Guardians of the Galaxy opens in theaters.
Fifty Shades of Grey is going to be directed by Sam Taylor-Johnson (Nowhere Boy), who will draw from an adapted script written by Kelly Marcel (Saving Mr. Banks). The story revolves around "the relationship of 27-year-old billionaire Christian Grey and college student Anastasia Steele," neither of whom have yet to be formally cast. And by "story," we mean a series of sexual encounters between Mr. Grey and Miss Steele.
Elsewhere, Fox Searchlight, Regency Entertainment and River Road Entertainment have moved 12 Years a Slave from a late December 2013 release (to qualify for the 2014 Oscars ceremony), to a limited theatrical release beginning on October 18th, 2013. The film is expected to be a heavyweight contender during this year's awards season, between a fantastic cast (headed by Chiwetel Ejiofor and Michael Fassbender), riveting subject matter and direction by Steve McQueen (Shame).
Here is an official summary of 12 Years a Slave:
12 YEARS A SLAVE is based on an incredible true story of one man's fight for survival and freedom. In the pre-Civil War United States, Solomon Northup (Chiwetel Ejiofor), a free black man from upstate New York, is abducted and sold into slavery. Facing cruelty (personified by a malevolent slave owner, portrayed by Michael Fassbender), as well as unexpected kindnesses, Solomon struggles not only to stay alive, but to retain his dignity.
Lastly, shifting over to more family-friendly material: Disney and director Kenneth Branagh's (Thor) live-action Cinderella retelling is now set to hit theaters on March 13th, 2015. The fairy tale project has cast Lily James (Downton Abbey) as the title character, alongside Richard Madden (Game of Thrones) as Cinderella's Prince, Cate Blanchett (The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey) as her wicked stepmother, and Helena Bonham Carter (The Lone Ranger) as her fairy godmother.
In related news:
- Relativity's Romeo and Juliet (starring Douglas Booth and Hailee Steinfeld) has changed dates again, moving from September 6th to October 11th, 2013.
- The Weinstein Company's Grace of Monaco (starring Nicole Kidman as Princess Grace) has moved up a month, from December to November 27th, 2013.
Source: See the aforementioned studios