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There are directors, and then there are legends. Some filmmakers deliver such compelling art, that they leave the legacy of an entire school of film-making, inspired by their style. We follow them with fervor, and wait impatiently for their next project. This is a list of our favorite living Directors, and the 10 exciting films we are waiting for, from their powerhouses.
#1 Clint Eastwood: The 15:17 to Paris
Eastwood’s next is based on the biography The 15:17 to Paris: The True Story of a Terrorist, a Train, and Three American Heroes by Jeffrey E. Stern. It is based on a the story of three American heroes, Spencer Stone, Anthony Sadler and Alek Skarlatos, who thwarted a terrorist attack on a Paris bound train. Eastwood decided to cast Sadler, Skarlatos, and Stone to portray themselves in the film, an unconventional and bold move, as a filmmaker. Going by the success of Eastwood’s latest homages to real-life heroes, “American Sniper” and “Sully,” there is much to look forward to the project. It has a 2018 release date.
#2 Robert Zemeckis: Marwencol
Zemeckis, of Back to the Future, Cast Away, and Forrest Gump fame, is working on an untitled project, based on Jeff Malmberg’s 2010 documentary “Marwencol.” Slated to be released in 2018, this fantasy drama explores how a beaten, brain-damaged man, finds therapeutic relief in a fantasy WW-II era world, in his own backyard. With Diane Kruger, and Steve Carell joining the cast, it promises to be a gripping creation.
#3 Todd Haynes: Wonderstruck
A pioneer of New Queer Cinema movement, Haynes, is acclaimed for his provocative Poison, his ’50s-set drama, Far from Heaven, his non-linear Bob Dylan biopic, I’m not There, and his latest, the seminal romance, Carol. In October 2017, he is bringing us an adaptation of Brian Selznick’s children’s novel by the same name. The movie explores lives of two children, in different era, running away on epic life quests. The movie received very warm welcome at Cannes, and has been reviewed to be ‘poetic’, ‘transcendental’, and ‘having an aura of of unusual innocence’.
#4 Claire Denis: High Life
She was the French genius behind Chocolat, White Material, and, 35 Shots of Rum. Famously known for her shooting fast, editing slowly modicum, Denis is currently spending time on her sci-fi epic, High Life. The film focuses on a group of criminals who are tricked into believing they will be freed if they participate in a mission to travel on a spaceship towards a black hole to find an alternate energy source while being sexually experimented on by the scientists on board. French physicist and black hole expert Aurélien Barrau is one of the key scientific advisers for the movie. Robert Pattinson, Patricia Arquette, and Mia Goth, who play lead roles in the film, are bound to create magic on screen.
#5 James Cameron: Avatar 2
We have a long wait for this. But, boy is it worth it! Major plot details haven’t been revealed yet, but the director has said that the sequels will introduce “whole new worlds, habitats, and cultures,” which very well could mean that we will get to meet some different kinds of intelligent alien species. In fact, the great news is that Cameron doesn’t intend to stop at the second one either. He has plans for Avatars 3, 4, and 5, already.
#6 Ang Lee: Gemini Man
When the mastermind behind movies like Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, or Brokeback Mountain, teams up with the amazing Will Smith, one can expect fireworks. The two are working together on a long-conceived project, about an assassin’s face-off with his younger, fitter, clone! The only hold-up for the project, until now, had been the ability to age/de-age the actor realistically. With the advent of CGI, Lee’s dream is now being brought to life.
#7 Michael Haneke: Happy End
Austrian film director and screenwriter best known for films such as Funny Games, Cache, The White Ribbon, Amour. His films have the streak of realism, set in disturbing, and thought provoking backgrounds. One of his trademarks is basing is films on psychotic, violent youth. Happy End, unlike what the name suggests, is a grave take on the refugee crisis, skyrocketing in Europe. Haneke has reunited with Amour actors Isabelle Huppert and Jean-Louis Trintignant for the project. The film has been screened at Cannes, and releases worldwide on 22nd Dec, 2017.
#8 Steven Spielberg: Ready Player One
The man or his work need no introduction. He is, undoubtedly, one of the most commercially successful directors, with a mastery over the craft. Spielberg has a broad range, and has dabbled in Hollywood escapist filmmaking, as well as subtle human journeys. One of his most prolific work remains Schindler’s List, but he claims rights to many other gems like Saving Private Ryan, Amistad, the Extra-Terrestrial, and Bridge of Spies. His upcoming science fiction adventure, Ready Player One, based on Ernest Cline’s YA book of the same name, is one of the most awaited films of 2018. The film stars Tye Sheridan, Olivia Cooke, Ben Mendelsohn, Mark Rylance, Simon Pegg, and T. J. Miller. The story is based on a dystopian future, where people escape the dull, decaying reality, through a virtual world. As with the book, the film has numerous homages to the popular culture of the 1980s. Among licensed characters and elements used in the film are The Iron Giant, the DeLorean time machine from Back to the Future, outfitted with KITT from Knight Rider, the DC Comics universe, The Lord of the Rings, Freddy Krueger, Duke Nukem, the possessed car from Christine, the van from The A-Team, the modified Ford Falcon used in Mad Max, the monster truck Bigfoot, and Kaneda’s motorcycle from Akira.
#9 Asghar Farhadi: Everybody Knows
This Iranian director has already made a deep impact in the world of cinema, with masterpieces like Fireworks Wednesday, A Separation, The Past, and The Salesman. Farhadi’s films reflect a microcosm of Modern Iran, and explore the complications of relationships at the cross-roads of class, gender, race, and social groups. The most interesting thing about his style is that he remains empathetic to the characters, without showing a morsel of moral judgment on any side. His upcoming Spanish project Todos lo Saben (Everybody Knows) stars Javier Bardem and Penélope Cruz, and is being shot in Spain. Very little is known about the film, other than that it’s a psychological thriller. It revolves around a woman, who visits Spain with family, for a brief visit, and how her stay gets complicated beyond imagination.
#10 Hayao Miyazaki: Boro the Caterpillar (?)
When the celebrated Japanese animator, and co-founder of Studio Ghibli, Hayao Miyazaki, announced his retirement in 2013, it was heartbreaking for fans of his classical manga movies. But, true to his nature, he has decided to come out of retirement, yet again. Miyazaki’s absolute beauties include Spirited Away, My Neighbor Totoro, Castle in the Sky, Princess Mononoke, Porco Rosso among many others. Miyazaki’s themes of preference are environmentalism, pacifism, feminism, love and family. He is not a fan of modern technology, and has also often criticized the current direction of anime film making. His latest project is shrouded in mystery, but it is believed that it’s based on the Studio Ghibli short film, Boro the Caterpillar. Looking forward!
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