The AVATARDED 25 must-see films of 2012

#25- Sparkle
Whitney Houston returns to the silver screen in "Sparkle".
Like the original film, this version of Sparkle will follow the three Williams sisters (Ejogo, Sumpter, Sparks), singers at their local church choir who eventually go on to become a successful girl group.


Their sudden rise unravels their personal lives, and the youngest sister, a music prodigy named Sparkle, struggles to become a star while overcoming the issues that are tearing her family apart. 


The film stars Jordin SparksDerek LukeWhitney HoustonMike EppsCee-Lo GreenCarmen EjogoTika Sumpter, and Omari Hardwick. 


Additionally, R&B artist R. Kelly has signed on to write original songs to augment the original song score from the 1976 film by Curtis Mayfield.  This film will be the debut of R&B/pop Grammy-nominated singer and American Idol-winner Jordin Sparks as an actress, and marks Whitney Houston's first feature film role since The Preacher's Wife in 1996. 



#24- Rock of Ages


Rock of Ages is an upcoming 2012 film adaptation of the 2006 Chris D'Arienzo rock/jukebox Broadway musical of the same name


Originally scheduled to enter production in the Summer of 2010 for a 2011 release, it is now under production since May 2011 and is scheduled for a June 1, 2012 release. 


It stars Diego Boneta and country singer Julianne Hough with an ensemble cast including Russell BrandTom CruiseKevin NashCatherine Zeta-JonesAlec BaldwinPaul GiamattiMalin Åkerman, and Mary J. Blige


The film will feature the music of Bon JoviDef LeppardForeignerJourneyPoison, and Twisted Sister.





#23- LOCK OUT


Guy Pearce plays a government agent convicted of a crime which he did not commit. He is offered his freedom if he can rescue the President's daughter from a prison in space which has been overtaken by its prisoners. 


Lock-Out (also knows as MS One: Maximum Security) also stars Maggie Grace. James Mather and Stephen St. Leger are both writing and directing it. This film has an expected release date of April 20, 2012.









#22- Madagascar 3:
Europe's Most Wanted


Madagascar 3: Europe's Most Wanted  is a sequel to Madagascar and Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa. It is set to be released on June 8, 2012


Alex the Lion (Ben Stiller), Marty the Zebra (Chris Rock), Melman the Giraffe (David Schwimmer), and Gloria the Hippopotamus (Jada Pinkett Smith) set out to return to New York after escaping to Africa. 


Dependent on the mechanical know-how of the notorious monkeys and penguins, their plan inevitably goes awry and they find themselves stranded in Monte Carlo, where they try to escape Europe from animal control by joining up with a traveling circus by chance. 


Led by the venerable siberian tiger Vitaly, the animal-centered circus has seen better days. During the course of a tour through a series of European cities that ends in a fabulous big top in the heart of London, Alex, Marty, Melman, and Gloria help Vitaly, Gia the jaguar, and Stefano the sea lion, rediscover their passion for show business and reinvent circus performance






#21- Red Tails



Red Tails is an upcoming 2012 action drama film directed by Anthony Hemingway, from a screenplay by John Ridley and Aaron McGruder


The story, written by Ridley, is inspired by true events. George Lucas serves as the executive producer for the project. 


It is based on the Tuskegee Airmen, a group of African American U.S. service members during World War II, and is the first Lucasfilm production since Radioland Murders (1994) not associated with the Indiana Jones or Star Wars franchises. 


This movie stars Cuba Gooding, Jr., who previously starred in another movie title based on The Red Tails calledThe Tuskegee Airmen on HBO. It is Gooding's first theatrical release in five years.















#20- Movie 43

Movie 43, previously Untitled Comedy, is an upcoming comedy film written by Rocky Russo, Jeremy Sosenko and Patrik Forsberg. The film will feature segments directed by Patrik Forsberg and Peter Farrelly and co-directed by Elizabeth BanksSteven BrillSteve CarrRusty Cundieff, James Duffy, Griffin DunneJames GunnBob Odenkirk and Brett Ratner. It is scheduled to be released on April 13, 2012.









#19- The Raven


In this gritty thriller, Edgar Allan Poe (John Cusack) joins forces with a young Baltimore detective (Luke Evans, Immortals) to hunt down a mad serial killer who's using Poe's own works as the basis in a string of brutal murders.


Directed by James McTeigue (V for Vendetta, Ninja Assassin), the film also stars Alice Eve (She's Out Of My League), Brendan Gleeson (In Bruges) and Oliver Jackson-Cohen (Faster). 


When a mother and daughter are found brutally murdered in 19th century Baltimore, Detective Emmett Fields (Luke Evans) makes a startling discovery: the crime resembles a fictional murder described in gory detail in the local newspaper--part of a collection of stories penned by struggling writer and social pariah Edgar Allan Poe. 


But even as Poe is questioned by police, another grisly murder occurs, also inspired by a popular Poe story. Realizing a serial killer is on the loose using Poe's writings as the backdrop for his bloody rampage, Fields enlists the author's help in stopping the attacks. But when it appears someone close to Poe may become the murderer's next victim, the stakes become even higher and the inventor of the detective story calls on his own powers of deduction to try to solve the case before it's too late.






Rise of the Guardians, formerly titled The Guardians of Childhood, is an upcoming 3D computer-animated action adventure comedy film which will be based on William Joyce's forthcoming The Guardians of Childhood books. It will be produced by DreamWorks Animation and is set for release on November 21, 2012. 


The film stars Dakota GoyoAlec BaldwinHugh JackmanChris PineIsla Fisher, and Jude Law. It is being directed by Peter Ramsey and co-directed byWilliam Joyce, the creator of the 2007 film Meet the Robinsons. The film is being described as "a contemporary fairytale based on existing fairytale characters". 


The film features a group of heroes from various childhood stories - Santa Claus (Alec Baldwin), the Easter Bunny (Hugh Jackman), Tooth Fairy (Isla Fisher) and Jack Frost (Chris Pine) - who join in an adventure to stop Pitch the Boogeyman (Jude Law) from sending the world into "eternal darkness".




#17- The Secret World of Arrietty


The Secret World of Arrietty, known in Japan as The Borrower Arrietty and in the UK as Arrietty, is a 2010 Japanese animated fantasy film based on Mary Norton's juvenile fantasy novel The Borrowers. 


The film was directed by Hiromasa Yonebayashi, written by Hayao Miyazaki and Keiko Niwa, and stars the voices of Mirai Shida as the titular character, Ryunosuke Kamiki as Sho, and Tatsuya Fujiwara as Spiller. The film tells the story of Arrietty, a young Borrower who lives under the floorboards of a typical household. 


She eventually befriends Sho, a human boy with a heart condition since birth who is living with his great aunt Sadako. When Sadako's maid Haru becomes suspicious of the floorboard's disturbance, Arrietty and her family must escape detection, even if it means leaving their beloved home.


#16- Abraham Lincoln, Vampire Hunter



Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter is a 2012 American supernatural film based on the 2010 mashup novel Abraham Lincoln, Vampire Hunter. The film is directed by Timur Bekmambetov and is produced by Bekmambetov and Tim Burton


The novel's author, Seth Grahame-Smith, wrote the adapted screenplay. The real-life figure Abraham Lincoln, the 16th President of the United States (1861–1865), is fictionally portrayed in the novel and the film as having a secret identity as a vampire hunter


Benjamin Walker stars as Lincoln. Filming began in Louisiana in March 2011, and the film is being produced in 3D. It is scheduled to be released on June 22, 2012.






Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters is an upcoming American action horror comedy film directed by Tommy Wirkola. The film will be made in 3-D and is slated for release on March 2, 2012. Jeremy Renner and Gemma Arterton have been cast in the titular roles, while Famke Janssen has been cast as the leader of a coven of evil witches that they seek out to destroy. 


Catching up with Hansel (Renner) and Gretel (Arterton) 15 years after the traumatic incident involving a gingerbread house, the siblings have evolved into vengeful bounty hunters dedicated to exterminating witches. Over the years, the siblings became expert hunters, famous for their proficiency at tracking and taking down their prey. 


Although still recovering from their ordeal, their work is relatively easy as for an unknown reason harmful spells and curses do not work well against them. Now, Mayor of Augsburg recruits them to rid the town and nearby forests of an evil sorceress (Janssen) who is planning to sacrifice many local children at the witches' gathering during the upcoming 'Blood Moon' night in two days time. 






#14- Dark Shadows


In 1752, the Collins family sails from Liverpool, England to North America. The son, Barnabas, grows up to be a wealthy playboy in Collinsport, Maine and is the master of Collinwood Manor. He breaks the heart of a witch, Angelique Bouchard, who turns him into a vampire and buries him alive.


 In 1972, Barnabas is freed and returns to find his manor in ruin. It is occupied by dysfunctional descendants and other residents, all of whom have secrets.


Dark Shadows is based on the 1966-1971 gothic soap opera of the same name


The film is directed by Tim Burton and stars Johnny Depp as the vampire Barnabas Collins.










#13- Dr. Seuss' The Lorax


The Lorax, also known as Dr. Seuss' The Lorax, is an upcoming American computer-animated 3-D film based on Dr. Seusschildren's book of the same name


It is being produced by Illumination Entertainment and will be released by Universal Pictures on March 2, 2012, what would have been the 108th birthday of Seuss, who died at the age of 87 in 1991. The film follows Ted (Zac Efron), an idealistic young boy who lives in a city without trees. 


He sets out to find the one thing that will win him the affection of Audrey (Taylor Swift), the girl of his dreams, who wishes to see a real tree. To do so, he must discover the story of the Lorax (Danny DeVito), a grumpy yet charming creature who fights to protect his world.












While trying to save their childhood orphanage, Moe, Larry, and Curly inadvertently stumble into a murder plot and wind up starring in a reality TV show. 


The Three Stooges is based on the mid-20th century comedy shorts of the same name. It was produced, written and directed by the Farrelly Brothers and co-written by Mike Cerrone. 


It stars Chris DiamantopoulosSean Hayes and Will Sasso.












#11- Men in Black III


Men in Black III (stylized MIB3 and formerly known as Men in Black III-D) is an upcoming 3D science fiction comedy film starring Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones


It will be released as the sequel to Men in Black II on May 25, 2012, ten years after its predecessor. It will also star Josh Brolin and Jemaine Clement, with Barry Sonnenfeld returning as director, and Steven Spielberg returning as executive producer. 


The film is the third entry in the Men in Black film series which is based on the Malibu comic book series The Men in Black by Lowell Cunningham







#10- The Dictator


The Dictator is an upcoming 2012 film starring Sacha Baron Cohen


Cohen's fourth film will "tell the heroic story of a dictator who risked his life to ensure that democracy would never come to the country he so lovingly oppressed", according to Paramount Pictures, which will distribute the film.


Larry Charles, who previously directed Baron Cohen's mockumentaries Borat and Brüno, will also direct the film. 


Baron Cohen will star alongside Ben Kingsley and Anna Faris. 


The film is said to be inspired by the novel Zabibah and the King and by Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein.







#9- Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace 3D




In September 2011, it was announced that all six films in the series will be stereo converted to 3D. The films will re-release in internal-saga order beginning with The Phantom Menace, which is scheduled to be released on February 10, 2012









#8- Haywire


Freelance covert operative Mallory Kane is hired out by her handler to various global entities to perform jobs that governments can't authorize and heads of state would rather not know about. 


After a mission to rescue a hostage in Barcelona, Mallory is quickly dispatched on another mission to Dublin. When the operation goes awry and Mallory finds she has been double crossed, she needs to use all of her skills, tricks and abilities to escape an international manhunt, make it back to the United States, protect her family, and exact revenge on those that have betrayed her. 


Directed by Steven Soderbergh, starring Gina CaranoAntonio BanderasMichael DouglasEwan McGregorChanning Tatum and Michael Fassbender.








#7- Ted
Ted is an upcoming American comedy film directed by Family Guy creator Seth MacFarlane and starring Mark WahlbergMila Kunis and Laura Vandervoort.  The film, which is the feature-length directorial debut for MacFarlane, produced by Working Title Films and Media Rights Capital, and will be distributed by Universal Pictures and is set for a July 13, 2012 release. 

Mark Wahlberg plays John, a perfectly normal Boston native whose childhood wish for his teddy bear to come to life comes true. The bear (Ted) — voiced by MacFarlane himself — remains his best friend well into his adult years. Conflict emerges when Ted's irresponsible and vulgar slacker lifestyle comes in the way of John's attempt to embrace his adulthood and the woman of his dreams, Lori (Mila Kunis).


MacFarlane's directorial debut will be a live-action effort with the exception of the computer-animated Ted. MacFarlane wrote the screenplay alongside his Family Guy colleagues Alec Sulkin and Wellesley Wild.







As the nation states Euromerica and New Shanghai vie for supremacy in the far future, a simple factory worker suffering from violent nightmares (Collin Farrell) also begins to suspect that he's a spy whose memory and personality were erased and replaced, though he is unaware which side of the fight he's on and how important his lost memories will be in its outcome.


Total Recall is an upcoming science-fiction action film based on the 1990 film of the same name and the 1966 novelette We Can Remember It for You Wholesale by Philip K. Dick. It is directed by Len Wiseman and written by Mark BombackJames Vanderbilt and Kurt Wimmer. It is scheduled to be released in the United States and Canada on August 3, 2012. 


The kickass supporting cast include Kate Beckinsale as Lori, Quaid's wife, Jessica Biel as Melina, a prostitute who may have links to Quaid's past, Bill Nighy as Kuato, a Euromerican rebel leader, Bryan Cranston as Vilos Cohaagen, a powerful corporate leader and main antagonist, John Cho as McClane, a suave rep for the futuristic company that offers Quaid the chance to experience an imagined adventure, Bokeem Woodbine as Harry, Quaid's best friend, Ethan Hawke as an Euromerican scientist and Steve Byers as Henry Reed.




The title of the film is an allusion to Prometheus, a Titan of Greek mythology who stole fire from Zeus and gave it to humankind — an act which brought eternal punishment upon him. While actually the name of the humans' spaceship in the story, the name "Prometheus" is used in a greater metaphorical sense.The film will focus on the mythology within the Alien universe. Set in the late-21st century, Prometheus will explore the advanced civilization of an extraterrestrial race responsible for the origins of modern humans on Earth, as well as the origins of the alien creature which made its first appearance in the 1979 film.

Directed by Ridley Scott and starring Noomi RapaceMichael FassbenderGuy PearceIdris ElbaLogan Marshall-Green and Charlize Theron, the film was originally conceived as a prequel to Scott's 1979 science fiction horror film Alien; however, the events of Prometheus will not precede any of the characters or storylines from the Alien franchise


According to Scott, though the film shares "strands of Alien's DNA, so to speak", Prometheus will explore its own mythology and universe and is not directly linked to Alien. Filming began in March 2011, and Prometheus is scheduled for release in the USA on June 8, 2012 through 20th Century Fox.











#4- The Avengers



The Avengers is an upcoming American superhero film produced by Marvel Studios and distributed by Walt Disney Pictures, based on the Marvel Comics superhero team of the same name. It is the sixth installment in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, which crosses over several Marvel superhero films including Iron Man (2008), The Incredible Hulk (2008), Iron Man 2 (2010), Thor (2011) and Captain America: The First Avenger (2011). The film is written and directed by Joss Whedon and features an ensemble cast, which includes Robert Downey, Jr.Chris EvansMark RuffaloChris HemsworthScarlett JohanssonJeremy Renner and Samuel L. Jackson. In The AvengersNick Fury, director of the peacekeeping organization S.H.I.E.L.D., recruits Iron Man, the HulkThor, and Captain America to save the world from destruction.



#3- Skyfall


MI6 operative James Bond, agent 007, questions his loyalty to his superior, "M", when her past actions have consequences in the present. When MI6 itself is attacked, Bond must seek out and eliminate the threat.
Skyfall is the twenty-third James Bond film, produced by Eon Productions for MGMColumbia Pictures and Sony Pictures Entertainment. Directed by Sam Mendes (American Beauty, Revolutionary Road), it features Daniel Craig's third performance as James BondJudi Dench reprises her role as "M" for the seventh consecutive film. Craig has confirmed that the events of the film are not directly related to Casino Royale and Quantum of Solace.





Following the death of District Attorney Harvey Dent, Batman assumes responsibility for Dent's crimes in order to protect Dent's reputation and is subsequently hunted by the Gotham City Police Department. Eight years after the events of The Dark Knight, Batman returns to Gotham where he must discover the truth regarding the "enigmatic" Selina Kyle while stopping the villain Bane's plans to destroy the city.


Directed by Christopher Nolan and written by Nolan and his brother Jonathan Nolan, TDKR is based on the DC Comics character Batman, will be the third installment in Nolan's Batman film series, and is a sequel to Batman Begins (2005) and The Dark Knight (2008). It stars Christian BaleMichael CaineGary Oldman, and Morgan FreemanThe film will take place eight years after the events of The Dark Knight and will introduce the characters of Selina Kyle and Bane—portrayed by Anne Hathaway and Tom Hardy respectively—two villains from the Batman mythology.




In a 2007 interview with The Daily Telegraph, director Quentin Tarantino discussed an idea for a form of spaghetti western set in America's Deep South which he called "a southern", stating that he wanted "to do movies that deal with America's horrible past with slavery and stuff but do them like spaghetti westerns, not like big issue movies. I want to do them like they're genre films, but they deal with everything that America has never dealt with because it's ashamed of it, and other countries don't really deal with because they don't feel they have the right to".  


On May 2, 2011, it was confirmed that the title of this film will be Django Unchained, and feature the revenge of a slave on his former master. Tarantino finished the script on April 26, 2011, and handed in the final draft to The Weinstein Company. Agency William Morris Endeavor reported Christoph Waltz was cast to play a German bounty hunter, with Stacey Sher producing. 


Although Will Smith and Idris Elba were heavily rumored to be up for the title role, Jamie Foxx has since been confirmed to play Django. Tarantino regular Samuel L. Jackson will play Stephen, a wise, proud house slave. Leonardo DiCaprio has also been officially cast in the role of Calvin Candie, the primary antagonist in the film. 

Kevin Costner had been cast as Ace Woody, a "vile and sadistic trainer of slaves who are forced to fight in death matches for a plantation owner (DiCaprio)" before he later dropped out due to scheduling conflicts, and has been replaced by Kurt Russell. Kerry Washington has been cast as Broomhilda, the "long-suffering slave wife of Django." Tarantino-collaborator RZA was recently cast as a slave named Thadeus, Sacha Baron Cohen was cast in the role as gambler Scotty Harmony who wishes to purchase Django's wife from Calvin Candie and Tarantino is also interested in including Lady Gaga in the film to some degree





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