Despite Ridley Scott being back at the reins, Prometheus (2012) turned out to be a bit of a damp squib. Its sequel looks miles better already.
Ripley-esque Katherine Waterston and Danny McBride are among crewmates on the good spaceship Covenant who find what looks like paradise but turns out to be a much less friendly place. Its sole inhabitant: David, the synthetic person played by Michael Fassbender.
Two years on from their storming Ex Machina, Alex Garland and Oscar Isaac are back with the story of a biologist (Natalie Portman) who signs up for “a dangerous, secret expedition where the laws of nature don’t apply”. Jennifer Jason Leigh is a — we’re assuming — slightly unhelpful psychologist.
Blade Runner 2049
If the return of Harrison Ford in The Force Awakens made for the most eagerly-anticipated sci-fi of 2015, the return of Harrison Ford in a very belated Blade Runner sequel must make Denis Villeneuve’s flick — also starring Ryan Gosling, for God’s sake — the early pick of next year’s. One of the most expensive R-rated movies ever made, it’s still pretty secret, but we do know Robin Wright, Jared Leto and Dave Bautista co-star.
The Dark Tower
Idris Elba and Matthew McConaughey top-line this Stephen King adaptation — the former as a lone knight patrolling the alternate dimension of Mid-World; the latter as a vicious sorcerer hellbent on preventing our 11-year-old hero reaching the Dark Tower and thus saving everyone from extinction. Danish director Nikolaj Arcel looks a bracingly unconventional choice to tackle King’s bracingly weird series.
Call it the hangover Gravity effect, but space is big in 2017 — very, very big. Despite some slightly ropey lineage — the director is an Independence Day veteran; Gerard Butler features prominently in the cast — there’s some positive buzz building around this tale of a man who tries to stop climate-controlling satellites from creating a huge storm. And then his brother discovers a plan to assassinate the president (Andy Garcia). Never rains but it pours, eh?