Every geek movie we're excited about in 2015

The return of "Star Wars", "Jurassic World" and "Mad Max" are among the sci-fi, fantasy, animated and action geek treats heading to theatres in 2015.

Richard Trenholm
Richard Trenholm was CNET's film and TV editor, covering the big screen, small screen and streaming. A member of the Film Critic's Circle, he's covered technology and culture from London's tech scene to Europe's refugee camps to the Sundance film festival.
Richard Trenholm
1 of 55 Lucasfilm

​Strange Magic

The year 2015 promises a plethora of sci-fi, fantasy, animated and action movies, so we've rounded 'em up for you right here.

The year kicks off with "Strange Magic". Produced by George Lucas, this 3D animated fantasy will combine "A Midsummer Night's Dream" with pop songs come January 2015.

Another animated film due in January is "Robodog". KC -- it stands for Kinetic Canine -- is a doggie droid in this animated movie voiced by Ellen Page, Ron Perlman and Rainn Wilson.

2 of 55 Marvel


"Hackers" meets "Heat" in Michael Mann's globetrotting cybercrime hack-'em-up starring Thor himself, Chris Hemsworth.

Also out in January is "Predestination", in which Ethan Hawke is a timecop training newcomer Sarah Snook to take out a terrorist in the past. Directed by the Spierig Brothers, "Predestination" could be this year's "Looper".

3 of 55 Sky


Bruce Willis -- pictured above advertising Sky -- and Thomas Jane face off in a "Westworld"-style tale of robots created to cater to our wildest fantasies.

Also out in February, "Seventh Son" sees Ben Barnes mentored by Jeff Bridges in this long-delayed adaptation of novel "The Spook's Apprentice".

4 of 55 Jaap Buitendijk

Kingsman: The Secret Service

A very dapper Colin Firth and Michael Caine star in this James Bond-style comic book adaptation, also featuring Mark Hamill and Samuel L. Jackson.

And in "Hitman: Agent 47", it's a second crack at the silver screen for the sharp-dressed video game assassin, with Rupert Friend stepping into Timothy Olyphant's bald cap.

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Absolutely Anything

Simon Pegg plays a teacher given unlimited powers by aliens in "Absolutely Anything." It's directed by ex-Python Terry Jones in a comedy also featuring Robin Williams, Kate Beckinsale and Joanna Lumley.

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Project Almanac

Produced by Michael Bay, "Project Almanac" -- previously known as "Welcome to Yesterday" follows a group of timey-wimey teens fixing past mistakes.

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Jupiter Ascending

The Wachoswkis follow "The Matrix" with a proper space opera epic starring Channing Tatum, Mila Kunis and Sean Bean with a Yorkshire accent. Jupiter ascends in February 2015.

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Hot Tub Time Machine 2

John Cusack is conspicuously absent from this comedy sequel as the hapless hot tubbers head to the future.

And in horror story "Lazarus", "Community" star Donald Glover, Mark Duplass and Olivia Wilde star in "Jiro Dreams of Sushi" director David Gelb's tale of medical students resurrecting the dead expected in February.

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The Woman in Black: Angel of Death

Legendary British studio Hammer returns to Eel Marsh House in this horror sequel, but this time without Daniel Radcliffe, pictured above in the first film.

In other horror news, "Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension" is the sixth in the series, set to be released in March.

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Taken 3

In "Taken 3," deadly dad Liam Neeson is back with a neck-snap. You won't believe who they've taken now... actually you probably will.

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"District 9" and "Elysium" director Neill Blomkamp recruits Hugh Jackman, Dev Patel, Sigourney Weaver with Yolandi Visser and Ninja -- aka South African rap duo Die Antwoord -- in "Chappie," a tale of a robot learning to live.

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Furious 7

The untimely death of Paul Walker meant that his brothers and CGI were employed as stand-ins to finish the latest "Fast and the Furious" movie, in which Jason Statham faces off against Vin Diesel, Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, and the rest of the crew. "Saw" director James Wan is in charge.

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The second of four movies in the "Divergent" series sees Shailene Woodley return as Beatrice "Tris" Prior in this adaptation of the young adult novels written by Veronica Roth. It's out in March 2015.

There's more young adult action in "The Maze Runner: Scorch Trials", the second movie adaptation of James Dashner's novels. That's out in September.

14 of 55 Dreamworks


Pop princess Rihanna and "Big Bang" theorist Jim Parsons -- that's Doctor Sheldon Cooper to you -- provide the voice for this Dreamworks animated movie about an alien invasion. Home comes home in March 2015.

15 of 55 Dean Buscher


"The Walking Dead" creator Robert Kirkman recruits zombie-bashing star Norman Reedus with Djimon Hounsou, last seen in "Guardians of the Galaxy", to play caretakers looking after a cryogenically frozen population in "Air".

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The Lobster

Léa Seydoux, Ben Whishaw, Rachel Weisz, Colin Farrell, John C. Reilly and Olivia Colman star in "Dogtooth" director Yorgos Lanthimos' English-language debut. In the near future, single people are forced to choose a mate, or be turned into animals and released into the woods. Er... what?

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Ex Machina

The directorial debut of "28 Days Later" and "Dredd" scribe Alex Garland, this taut love triangle between two men and a beautiful robot should get more attention from the fact that its stars Oscar Isaac and Domhnall Gleeson have both also been cast in a little sci-fi movie called "Star Wars Episode VII". Ex Machina is due out in April 2015.

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The latest fairy tale to get the live action treatment is "Cinderella", directed by Kenneth Branagh with Cate Blanchett as the wicked stepmother and Helena Bonham Carter as the fairy godmother.

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Z for Zachariah

"Z for Zachariah" presents another sci-fi love triangle, this time between Margot Robbie, Chiwetel Ejiofor and "Star Trek" star Chris Pine. Our money's on Captain Kirk. Based on the 1974 novel.

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Borrowing its name from the Disneyworld ride, "Tomorrowland" sees George Clooney and Hugh Laurie journey to a mysterious other world in May 2015.

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Mad Max: Fury Road

Tom Hardy is the road warrior in George Miller's long-awaited sequel to his post-apocalyptic action classic starring Mel Gibson. Expect vehicular carnage from Charlize Theron, Nicholas Hoult and the last of the V8 Interceptors.

22 of 55 Bruce Glikas/FilmMagic

Untitled Cameron Crowe film

Expected in May is Cameron Crowe's mysterious next project. Billed as a romantic comedy starring Bradley Cooper and Emma Stone, it also features a talking computer and a mystical island involving the launch of a weapons satellite. So there's that.

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Jurassic World

"Jurassic World," the long-awaited update to Spielberg's dino-saga sees Chris Pratt face off against killer dinosaurs with souped-up DNA. Expect oohs and aaahs then running and screaming in June 2015.

Speaking of dinosaurs, also in June we'll see "Cowboys vs Dinosaurs". Admit it -- you're going to watch this when it comes on Netflix. Eric Roberts is in it. He plays a dinosaur. Probably.

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The Transporter Legacy

Jason Statham is out and rapper-turned-actor Ed Skrein is in for this action sequel. That prompted Skrein to hand over the role of Daario Naharis to another actor in "Game of Thrones".

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The origins of the cute yellow henchcreatures from "Despicable Me" are explored in this animated 3D spin-off featuring the voices of Sandra Bullock, Jon Hamm, Michael Keaton, Allison Janney and Steve Coogan.

And in "Monster Trucks", Jane Levy, Lucas Till, Amy Ryan, Rob Lowe and Danny Glover appear in Paramount's mix of live action and CGI.

26 of 55 Disney/Pixar

Inside Out

Emotions come to life in "Inside Out," Pixar's 3D animated foray into the mind of a young girl, with Amy Poehler proving the voice of Joy, Mindy Kaling voicing Disgust and Bill Hader as Fear.

Pixar is also showing us its own version of a jurassic world in "The Good Dinosaur", which shows what would have happened if the dinosaurs never died out. It's out in November 2015.

27 of 55

Avengers: Age of Ultron

Earth's mightiest heroes Captain America, Black Widow, Iron Man, Thor, the Incredible Hulk reunite in the second Avengers movie written and directed by Joss Whedon. Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson, Robert Downey Jr, Chris Hemsworth and Mark Ruffalo are the goodies and James Spader is the baddie. It's in theatres in May 2015.

28 of 55 Nick Briggs


Stylish director Tarsem Singh directs Ryan Reynolds and "Downton Abbey" star Michelle Dockery (pictured) in "Selfless", the story of a dying man borrowing a younger body.

Oddly enough, Ryan Reynolds appears in two body-swap movies this year: in August he appears alongside Kevin Costner, Tommy Lee Jones and Gary Oldman in "Criminal", which involves a CIA agent's memories implanted into a bad guy.

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Terminator Genisys

Arnie is back -- well, he did say he would be -- as an ageing killer robot flips the script on the original, so "Game of Thrones" dragon lady Emilia Clarke becomes an ass-kicking new Sarah Connor. "Doctor Who" star Matt Smith is back in timey-wimey mode when the film opens in July 2015.

Also in July, Adam Sandler, Sean Bean and Peter Dinklage bring their A game in "Pixels" as vintage video games, including Space Invaders, Pac-Man, and Donkey Kong invade New York.

30 of 55 Josh Trank

The Fantastic Four

"Chronicle" director Josh Trank reboots a younger, sexier version of Marvel's first family, played by Kate Mara, Miles Teller, Michael B Jordan and Jamie Bell as scientists mutating into invisible, stretchy, rocky, fiery superheroes. Toby Kebbel is the villain Doom, pictured above during filming. The film is out in August 2015

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Hugh Jackman is the villainous Blackbeard and Garrett Hedlund a young pirate named Hook in this live action origin story for Peter Pan and the people of Neverland.

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The Man from UNCLE

"Sherlock Holmes" director Guy Ritchie resurrects another classic story as Henry Cavill and Armie Hammer step into Robert Vaughan and David McCallum's turtlenecks as secret agents Napoleon Solo and Illya Kuryakin. Did you know Ian Fleming was one of the co-creators of "The man from UNCLE"? You do now.

33 of 55 Hasbro

Jem and the Holograms

Truly outrageous! Jerrica Benton becomes an online recording sensation in this live action update of the fabulous 1980s cartoon, directed by "Step Up 3D" and "G.I. Joe: Retaliation" director Jon M. Chu.

Speaking of kids' favourites, Mattel action figure Max Steel comes to life in a live action origin story.

34 of 55 Zade Rosenthal/Marvel Studios, Zade Rosenthal

Crimson Peak

Guillermo del Toro directs "Avengers" and "Thor" baddie Tom Hiddleston (pictured) and "Pacific Rim" star Charlie Hunnam in this 19th century-set chiller.

Also on a scary tip, "Unfriended" -- Previously known as "Offline" and "Cybernatural" -- is a horror story produced by Timur Bekmambetov about a group of teens being stalked during a Skype chat.

Meanwhile Sam Rockwell headlines a reboot of furniture-flinging 1980s horror series "Poltergeist", originally produced by Steven Spielberg.

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The Martian

Ridley Scott directs Matt Damon, Jessica Chastain and Sean Bean in "The Martian", a story of an astronaut stuck on the Red Planet, based on an originally self-published novel by Andy Weir.

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Long-gestating under the stewardship of "Shaun of the Dead" director Edgar Wright until he bailed at the last minute, this latest Marvel superhero movie see Paul Rudd and Michael Douglas get ants in their pants. Ant-e up in July 2015.

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After "Skyfall", James Bond will return in "Spectre". The name recalls the Special Executive for Counter-intelligence, Terrorism, Revenge and Extortion faced by Sean Connery's Bond back in the 1960s, and with legal issues over the characters settled rumours have flared that Christoph Waltz, officially confirmed to appear opposite Daniel Craig, will play the nefarious Ernst Stavro Blofeld. When the film hits cinemas in November 2015 the line-up of cool cars driven by Britain's deadliest secret agent will be joined by the new Aston Martin DB10.

38 of 55 Mat Hayward/Getty Images

The Last Witch Hunter

In "The Last Witch Hunter", Vin Diesel is an immortal witch hunter who must team up with a witch to stop a plague from ravaging New York. Elijah Wood and Michael Caine also star, while the witch is played by Rose Leslie from "Downton Abbey" and "Game of Thrones".

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Mission: Impossible 5

Shot in Austria, Morocco and England and set for a Christmas release, the fifth in the "Mission: Impossible" series sees Tom Cruise, Jeremy Renner, Simon Pegg and Ving Rhames back onboard. British actor Sean Harris -- the one with the biro on his bonce in "Prometheus", pictured above -- is the baddie.

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Midnight Special

A father legs it with his son when he discovers the boy has special powers. Stars Joel Edgerton, Kirsten Dunst, Michael Shannon (pictured above in "Man of Steel") and "Star Wars" newcomer Adam Driver, helmed by Jeff Nichols who directed "Take Shelter" and "Mud". Radiohead's Jonny Greenwood does the music.

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The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 2

The climax of the series that catapulted Jennifer Lawrence to megastardom, based on the young adult novels of Suzanne Collins. Star Phillip Seymour Hoffman sadly died during filming, but having completed most of his scenes, he will still appear as part of the all-star cast alongside Julianne Moore, Donald Sutherland, Woody Harrelson, and Natalie Dormer. Voluntering as tribute in November 2015.

42 of 55 Picasa

Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens

The big one: The original "Star Wars" stars join a host of new faces in a galaxy far, far away for the first of a new trilogy written and directed by JJ Abrams. The Force awakens in December 2015.

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Juarez 2045

A Mexican cartel replaces its hitmen with robots as Danny Trejo steps up the war on drugs in "Juarez 2045".

And "Scouts vs. Zombies" does exactly what it says on the tin. Michael Landon's son Christopher, who wrote several "Paranormal Activity" sequels, directs.

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Sharlto Copley stars in "Hardcore", a slice of stunt-heavy first-person insanity from Russia, shot entirely in on GoPro cameras strapped to the main character's face to put you right in the demented action. Backed by Timur Bekmambetov, part-funded on Indiegogo and based on the music videos of Biting Elbows that you may have seen go viral in the past couple of years.

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"Sherlock" director Paul McGuigan directs a starry British cast of James McAvoy as Dr Frankenstein and Daniel Radcliffe (pictured above in previous movie "Horns") as Igor, with Jessica Brown Findlay, Andrew Scott and Mark Gatiss.

There's more monster mayhem in September when Adam Sandler voices Dracula once again in 3D animated sequel "Hotel Transylvania 2".

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Samuel L. Jackson and John Cusack star in "Cell", an adaptation of the 2006 novel about mobile phones turning people into a flock of zombies... a bit like the queue outside an Apple Store, am I right?

47 of 55 Getty


In "Equals", Kristen Stewart and Nicholas Hoult live in a world where emotions have been done away with. What else is there to do but fall in love?

With "The Visit", M. Night Shyamalan is back. Maybe the twist will be that it's actually good.

And in "Darwin", Québécois director Alain Desrochers makes his English-language debut in this tale of a young boy in a world where everyone connects by computer.

48 of 55 Getty


Keanu Reeves is looking for love in space when he accidentally wakes up 90 years before the rest of the people in suspended animation on his spaceship. Isn't that always the way -- you wake up too early to get up but too late to go back to sleep. "Game of Thrones" director Brian Kirk makes his feature debut.

49 of 55 Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic/Getty

Into the Forest

Evan Rachel Wood (pictured) and Ellen Page are sisters in "Into the Forest", a post-apocalyptic story based on the 1996 novel by Jean Hegland.

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Ratchet and Clank

The popular PlayStation game Ratchet and Clank comes to the big screen in 3D with the feline mechanic and sentient robot saving the galaxy from Chairman Drek. James Arnold Taylor, David Kaye, and Jim Ward reprise their voice work from the game.

51 of 55 AMC

Kitchen Sink

Patton  Oswalt and Bob Odenkirk -- pictured above in "Breaking Bad" spin-off "Better Call Saul" -- join Vanessa Hudgens and Ed Westwick in a tale of teen cliques of vampires, zombies and humans.

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400 Days

Former Superman Brandon Routh and, er, comedian Dane Cook star in "400 Days," a story of astronauts losing it when they're locked away as part of an experiment.

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The Peanuts Movie

This 3D animation celebrates the 65th anniversary of Charles M. Schulz's much-loved comic strip. Archive recordings of animator Bill Melendez, who died in 2008, will be used so the new film uses the same voices for Snoopy and Woodstock as the films and TV specials fans will remember from their childhood. It's out in November.

54 of 55 Taylor Hill, WireImage

The Jungle Book

Disney returns to the jungle in this Jon Favreau-directed mixture of live action and CGI. The voice cast includes Bill Murray (pictured) and Christopher Walken. It also features Idris Elba, Ben Kingsley, and Giancarlo Esposito -- the terrifying bad guys from "The Wire", "Sexy Beast" and "Breaking Bad" -- in case you want to scare the bejeezus out of your kids...

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The Raven

Not to be confused with the 2012 Edgar Allen Poe movie, "The Raven" hatched as a 2010 short film directed by Ricardo de Montreuil, pictured above -- watch it on YouTube -- and is set to take flight with Gerard Butler in the lead. Look out for parkour, psychokinetic powers and drones.

Also out at some point this year is "High-Rise". Acclaimed British director Ben Wheatley ("Kill List", "Sightseers", "Doctor Who") adapts JG Ballard's tower block dystopia with Tom Hiddleston, Jeremy Irons and "Mad Men" star Elisabeth Moss.

And in "Prisoner of War", "Lord of the Rings" and "Guardians of the Galaxy" baddie Lee Pace is a soldier trying to survive an alien invasion in Africa.

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