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8/5/2021 • 5 min read
There's a Disney movie for every audience. With Pixar, Marvel Studios, and the films coming out of Disney's own live-action and animated divisions, Walt Disney's enduring studio has the world of entertainment covered.
Disney's new movie slate features a new original Pixar movie, an original effort from Walt Disney Animation, and several long-awaited Marvel Studios movies. There will be more to announce for 2022, too, as Disney and Marvel have some dates claimed for as-yet-untitled movies. Here are all the new Disney movies for the rest of 2021 and into 2022.
From Marvel Studios, SHANG-CHI AND THE LEGEND OF THE TEN RINGS stars Simu Liu as Shang-Chi, who must confront the past he thought he left behind when he is drawn into the web of the mysterious Ten Rings organization. Trouble is, his father Wenwu (Tony Leung) is the head of the Ten Rings, and he wants Shang-Chi to take his place as an assassin at his side. SHANG-CHI has elements that go back to the early days of Marvel movies. The Abomination, first seen in THE INCREDIBLE HULK, plays a part, and the Ten Rings were mentioned in IRON MAN 3. The movie also stars Awkwafina as Shang-Chi's friend Katy and Michelle Yeoh as Jiang Nan, as well as Fala Chen, Meng'er Zhang, Florian Munteanu, and Ronny Chieng.
ETERNALS brings a brand new but very old family into the Marvel Cinematic Universe. In the comics, the Eternals are an evolutionary offshoot of humanity, created millennia ago by an alien race known as the Celestials. They're tremendously powerful and connected to the origins of both Thanos and the Infinity Stones. In the movie, the Eternals — played by Angelina Jolie, Salma Hayek, Kumail Nanjiani, and Brian Tyree Henry — will face off against a race known as the Deviants. Chloé Zhao, who made the acclaimed film NOMADLAND, directs.
The new movie from Walt Disney Animation Studios is the tale of an extraordinary family, the Madrigals, which lives hidden in the mountains of Colombia in a magical house, in a vibrant town, in a wondrous, charmed place called an Encanto. Every member of the Madrigal family is born with a unique magical ability — everyone, that is, except for Mirabel (voiced by Stephanie Beatriz), who is all too aware that she is an ordinary 15-year-old. But when she discovers that the magic surrounding the Encanto is in danger, Mirabel decides that she, the only ordinary Madrigal, might just be her exceptional family’s last hope.
Pixar's TURNING RED is from director Domee Shi, who won an Oscar for her 2018 short film, BAO. Mei Lee (voiced by Rosalie Chiang) is a 13-year-old who suddenly “poofs” into a giant red panda when she gets too excited. (Which is practically ALWAYS). Sandra Oh (“The Chair,” “Killing Eve”) voices Mei Lee’s protective, if not slightly overbearing mother, Ming, who is never far from her daughter—an unfortunate reality for the teenager.
Doctor Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) got to play a huge role in the last two Avengers movies; now he’s back to star in DOCTOR STRANGE 2. Even better, the film’s proper title — DOCTOR STRANGE IN THE MULTIVERSE OF MADNESS — is possibly the wildest moniker Marvel has bestowed on a movie to date. If you think that sounds like it could be a horror movie, you’re not far off. Story details are as elusive, but we know a few things. Benedict Wong will return, and Elizabeth Olsen will also appear, reprising the role of Scarlet Witch. That lead trio will journey to new dimensions and alternate realities. Master horror and superhero filmmaker — the man who first brought Spider-Man to the big screen — Sam Raimi directed.
Chris Hemsworth and Tessa Thompson will return as Thor and Valkyrie, but there’s a big surprise in store. They’ll be joined by Jaimie Alexander, returning as Sif, and Christian Bale as the ominously named villain, Gorr the God Butcher. He's probably very nice. Finally, Natalie Portman returns as Jane Foster, the greatest love of Thor Odinson’s life. AVENGERS: ENDGAME planted the seeds for Jane’s return to the MCU, and now she’ll be more important than ever before. Jane Foster won’t be merely a supporting character; this time she’ll wield the enchanted hammer Mjolnir, and with it the power of the Mighty Thor. That’s right — a female Thor! How’s that for a shake-up?
Pixar has made four TOY STORY movies and several short spin-offs, but the studio has never done anything like this. They did hint at it, however. TOY STORY 4 features a daredevil toy called Duke Caboom which is clearly based on a real 1970s toy inspired by the stuntman Evel Knievel. Now imagine that the Buzz Lightyear toy was also based on someone real — or "real" in the world of the movies, anyway. The movie LIGHTYEAR is about that person. Chris Evans voices the character. So far it seems like Tim Allen won't be heard in the movie (because this isn't actually a Buzz Lightyear movie) but given the way Pixar works, you never know what will happen.
WAKANDA FOREVER has a very difficult task: To make a BLACK PANTHER without star Chadwick Boseman. Following the actor's death in 2020, Marvel said that the character T'Challa would not be recast and that this sequel would "explore the world of Wakanda & the rich characters introduced in the first film." We don't know precisely what that means, but we do know that this is the Marvel movie we're most curious to see.
Harrison Ford picks up the whip one more time for the fifth Indiana Jones movie. The title and plot are yet to be revealed, and even with a handful of sneaky set pics out in the wild, we know very little about the new Indy movie. Expect to see at least a handful of scenes featuring a digitally de-aged Ford — will this movie finally present the Fountain of Youth storyline that has been rumored for so long? James Mangold (LOGAN, FORD V FERRARI) takes over as director, making this the first Indiana Jones movie directed by someone other than Steven Spielberg.
All images courtesy of Marvel Studios, Pixar, Walt Disney Studios.
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