As the holiday lights of the season start to see their final days, cinephiles are starting to shift their focus away from reflecting on the best of 2018 to excitement for the new year's coming attractions at the movies.
Just as Black Panther and Avengers: Infinity War dominated conversation this past year, moviegoers are most intrigued by the fate of the MCU in 2019. They're also homesick for the next Star Wars episode, and excited for the Toy Story sequel and upcoming nostalgic live-action Disney remakes. Check out the top 10 list below:
Most Anticipated Blockbuster :
1. Avengers: Endgame
2. Captain Marvel
3. Star Wars: Episode IX
4. Spider-Man: Far From Home
5. Toy Story 4
7. The Lion King
The results are based on more than 3,500 responses from a new Fandango survey (via Entertainment Weekly ) recorded throughout December. It's no surprise that Avengers: Endgame tops the list, thanks to the jaw-dropping cliffhanger Marvel fans were left with at the end of Infinity War over the summer. Fans have been anticipating the conclusion of the Infinity War storyline since 2014, when the project was first announced.
"The Departed." Jack Nicholson pulled a real gun on Leo DiCaprio in The Departed, even though it wasn't in the script. He thought the scene wasn't intense enough before.
Captain Marvel 's position at No. 2 further reflects the MCU's dominance. The character's introduction could very well have an impact on Endgame too. Fans are especially excited for Captain Marvel because it will also mark the studio's first female-led superhero film. Another one of the surveys ranked Brie Larson's debut as Carol Danvers as the most anticipated actress in 2019.
It's no surprise Star Wars: Episode IX takes the third spot, because the film's official title and trailer have yet to drop, whereas Endgame and Captain Marvel 's marketing are well underway. Episode IX will see the return of J.J. Abrams at the helm, and supposedly conclude the Skywalker saga once and for all. Solo: A Star Wars Story may have bombed in 2018 but this installment is over 40 years in the making.
Two more high-profile sequels at least partly connected to Disney -- Sony/Marvel Studios' Spider-Man: Far from Home and Pixar's Toy Story 4 -- round out the top five. The popularity of the characters alone is unquestionable, but it helps that audiences love Tom Holland's Spidey and it's been almost 10 years since Woody and Buzz graced the big screen.
The outlier on the list is M. Night Shymalan's Glass , the mysterious sequel to two past films from the writer/director -- 2000's Unbreakable and 2016's Split . The upcoming movie looks to be a blend of a psychological thriller and superhero-type action. It stars Bruce Willis, Samuel L. Jackson, and James McAvoy. The January release is predicted to make an impressive $70 million opening weekend.
Taking up spots seven through nine are Disney's upcoming remakes of their animated classics, with The Lion King leading the pack. The new Lion King already broke the record for the most viewed trailer debut for the studio within 24 hours. More records may follow, as the original is one of the most beloved films of all time.
"Kingsman: The Secret Service." In the film and trailer, when the new Kingsman recruits have their first night's sleep interrupted by a deluge of water pouring into the dorm, on-set the scene went horrifically wrong. As Matthew Vaughn recalls "I shouted 'action!', the computer got it wrong and vrrrrssshh, everyone was twenty feet down underwater. Cameras, sound guys... Guys were in waders full of water, panic, everyone diving in and pulling people out." The set, painstakingly planned and rehearsed using height markers and computer-programmed water tanks, washed away in a near-biblical flood when said computers went rogue. "Those actors weren't acting, they were absolutely terrified," shudders Vaughn. "It was awful for the first day of filming."
Aladdin has fans excited for its fresh faces, Mena Massoud and Naomi Scott, as the two stars also topped Fandango's surveys for top rising movie stars. Dumbo is directed by Tim Burton and has an impressive cast including Colin Farrell, Michael Keaton, Eva Green, and Danny DeVito.
Amidst a sea of Disney releases, which dominates 80% of the list, is Warner Bros.'s dramatic story of DC's iconic villain in Joker . Joaquin Phoenix is taking on the role in a character study of the clown-faced criminal, with creative liberties outside the DCEU or source material.
Honorable mentions are perhaps It: Chapter Two , X-Men: Dark Phoenix , Shazam! , Hellboy , and Frozen 2 . It may surprise fans that they did not make the list of top 10 anticipated blockbusters, though do show up on Fandango's surveys in other categories.
There's tons of movies to be excited for in 2019 -- just take a look at our release schedule for the new year!