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Your Guide to the Surprising Amount of Movies Out This Fall [UPDATED]

Horror, fantasy, animation, there are lots of options for new movies this year. And many aren’t in theaters.
Horror, fantasy, animation, there are lots of options for new movies this year. And many aren’t in theaters.
Photo: Amazon/Netflix/Disney

“Wait, are there actually going to be new movies this fall?” It’s a thought we’ve all been having for some time. With the covid-19 pandemic wreaking havoc on all aspects of the world, the film industry included, one could easily assume movies are simply on hold for awhile. However, we’re here to tell you, that’s not the case. At all.

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While the fall movie season is certainly short on the kinds of mega-blockbusters and Oscar contenders we’re used to, there are tons of new genre movies coming out in the next few months. Some to theaters, if they’re open, but most to on-demand and streaming services. Below, we’ve attempted to give you at least a good cross-section of all the sci-fi, fantasy, and horror films we expect to be released.

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It should be noted that the film industry is changing by the minute so some of these movies could be delayed, canceled, released on different platforms, etc. More movies will be announced or dated too. Anything can, and will, happen. This is just a taste.


September

LX 2048

James D’Arcy, Anna Brewster, and Delroy Lindo star in a film about a future society where most people live in virtual reality and clones take over for you when you die. One man, however, does not want that to happen to him and his family. (September 25 on-demand)

Shortcut

Five students on a broken-down school bus attempt to survive while a mysterious creature hunts them from outside. (September 25 in theaters, December 22 on-demand)

Secret Society Of Second-Born Royals

Part Sky High, part The Princess Diaries, this film follows a girl who finds out she has royal blood, which means she has superpowers. She then gets sent to a school of similar superheroes. Sounds kind of fun. (September 25 streaming on Disney+)


October

Scare Me

When the power goes out all over a secluded town, two authors who are there trying to write novels attempt to one-up each other with scary stories. Scare Me debuted at Sundance this year to generally positive reviews, and while it’s apparently more of a psychological mind game than an actual horror film, we love the idea. (October 1 streaming on Shudder)

Jiang Ziya

Jiang Ziya is the sequel to the hit film Ne Zha and the second film in “the Fengshen Cinematic Universe.” This fantasy action film looks pretty incredible. (October 1 in theaters)

Possessor

An assassin who invades the minds of others to do her bidding runs into a problem with her latest victim. From the mind of David Cronenberg’s son, writer-director Brandon Cronenberg, the film stars Andrea Riseborough (Mandy), Christopher Abbott, Sean Bean, and Jennifer Jason Leigh. (October 2 in theaters, TBD on-demand)

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2067

On a future Earth where no one can breathe anymore due to climate change, a message from the future may have the answer: “Send Ethan Whyte.” The only problem is, Ethan Whyte is just some guy who works in a mine. What can he do to save humanity? Nightcrawler himself, Kodi Smit-McPhee, plays Ethan. (October 2 in theaters and on-demand)

Save Yourselves

We all try to take time to disconnect from the world. But you know when the absolute worst time to not look at your phone is? When aliens invade. John Reynolds and GLOW’s Sunita Mani star in this sci-fi comedy; audiences loved it at Sundance, and we’re hoping it’s as funny as it looks. (October 2 in theaters, October 6 on-demand)

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Vampires vs. The Bronx

If Attack the Block took place in Brooklyn instead of London, and the kids fought vampires instead of aliens, you’d have Vampires vs. The Bronx, a new comedy starring Method Man, Chris Redd, Zoe Saldana, and a bunch of badass kids. (October 2 streaming on Netflix)

Tar

A family is forced to shut down a business they’ve run for generations. But, on the night they finally close shop, an evil that has lived underneath their building finally awakens. It’s gonna be a hell of a night. (October 2 in theaters, October 20 on demand)

Black Box

A man dealing with trauma begins a nontraditional method of therapy in which he puts on a device that allows him to traverse his subconscious. Spoiler: You do not want to see what’s living in your subconscious. Mamoudou Athie (Underwater, Jurassic World 3) and Phylicia Rashad (Creed) star. (October 6 streaming on Amazon)

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The Phenomenon

We love a good documentary that purports to basically prove that UFOs exist and there’s a massive government cover-up, don’t we folks? (October 6 on-demand)

Hubie Halloween

The latest Adam Sandler Netflix film sees the Sandman play a Halloween-obsessed nerd bullied by everyone in his hometown of Salem. So, of course, he eventually becomes the only person who can save them from real supernatural activity. It looks super dumb but would you expect anything less? (October 7 streaming on Netflix)

Books of Blood

New. Clive. Barker. Content. Do you see? This year isn’t all bad. Books of Blood is based on his anthology series of the same name and tells three intertwined stories of horror. Gross, messed-up horror. You know. Clive Barker shit. It’s all there in the trailer. (October 7 streaming on Hulu)

Batman: Death in the Family

Yes. We’re breaking out the home video releases for this list too! At least, for a special occasion like a new Batman movie. Well, five movies. In one. The latest from Warner Bros. animation uses interactive technology to allow you to tell the story. Choose Your Own Adventure Batman movie? We’re sold. (October 13 on Blu-ray and on-demand)

Evil Eye

It’s the classic girl meets boy, boy and girl fall in love, girl’s mom thinks boy is a reincarnation of an evil spirit from her past story. Sarita Choudhury (Jessica Jones) and Sunita Mani (GLOW) star. (October 13 streaming on Amazon)

Nocturne

When a jealous girl (Sydney Sweeney from Euphoria) starts using black magic to out-achieve her overachiever sister (Madison Iseman from Jumanji), things are sure to go super duper well for both of them. This one looks freaky. (October 13 streaming on Amazon)

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A Babysitter’s Guide to Monster Hunting

A young woman finds herself in need of assistance from an ancient group of babysitters who protect the world from monsters and an evil villain played by Draco Malfoy himself, Tom Felton. This Netflix original is produced by Ivan Reitman and based on the first in a series of books. (October 14 streaming on Netflix)

Alone

Not to be confused another movie called Alone that was recently released, this one is about a man (Tyler Posey) who self-quarantines during a zombie apocalypse and begins to go mad. Then he meets two neighbors, one played by Donald Sutherland, who change his perspective on things. (October 16 on-demand)

Love and Monsters

One day, two chances to see stars of the MTV Teen Wolf show fall in love in a post-apocalyptic world. Though we have to say, this Dylan O’Brien flick looks a little better than the Tyler Posey one. We need more monsters versus zombies. (October 16 on-demand)

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Lupin III: The First

It may be called “The First” but this far from the first Lupin III movie. In fact, this is just the latest in the globally popular action franchise about a suave racer solving mysteries and saving the world. (October 18, In theaters)

The Mothman Legacy

It’s a good fall for documentaries on creepy subjects and that trend continues with The Mothman Legacy. The film takes a deep dive into the modern American myth of the evil Mothman, including interviews with people who claim to have seen him. (October 20 on-Demand)

Synchronic

Best friends (Anthony Mackie and Jamie Dornan) who are paramedics begin to see deaths due to a new drug—a drug that, somehow, can manipulate time. Buzz has been good on this one and we’re looking forward to it. (October 23 in theaters, January 2021 on-demand)

The Empty Man

It’s hard enough being a cop looking for a missing girl, but in The Empty Man, James Badge Dale also has to deal with having witnessed the death of his entire family, and the cult he encounters who are attempting to summon something from Hell. (October 23 in theaters)

Bad Hair

After a much-buzzed-about Sundance debut, the star-studded new film from Justin Simien (Dear White People) comes to streaming. It’s about a woman who gets a weave in order to fit in with her new profession, only to find out her hair may just kill her. Literally. (October 23 streaming on Hulu)

The Place of No Words

Director-actor Mark Webber (Scott Pilgrim vs. The World) cast his own family to tell the story of parents attempting to explain death to a young child by using a world of fantasy. (October 23 on-demand)

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Over the Moon

A young girl decides she’s going to travel to the moon to prove a story her parents told her about a person who lives there. This animated film looks like it could really be something special. (October 23 streaming on Netflix)

Come Play

If you were an evil spirit, the best way to haunt kids in 2020 wouldn’t be by possessing a doll or using a Ouija board. It would be to somehow become electronic and invade their phones or tablets, which is the premise of this new horror movie. (October 30 in theaters)

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His House

A couple narrowly escapes Sudan and safely make their way to the United Kingdom. Things should be OK, but unfortunately for them, evil may remain. Described as a film that blends social issues and horror a la Get Out and Us, His House premiered at the Sundance Film Festival. (October 30 streaming on Netflix)

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November

The Dark and the Wicked

The last thing you need when you go home to be with a dying parent is more pain and suffering. But such is the fate of the characters in The Dark and the Wicked, who realize evil is haunting their childhood home where dad is spending his last days. (November 6 in theaters and on-demand)

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Kindred

After the father of her unborn child dies, a woman is taken in by his parents. That should be a safe scenario, but very quickly she realizes these parents are not normal and do not have good intentions for the baby that’s coming. (November 6 in theaters and on-demand)

Freaky

A young woman (Kathryn Newton) switches bodies with an evil serial killer (Vince Vaughn)—and now the killer, actually the girl, has to stop the girl, who is actually the killer. This one looks all kinds of fun. (November 13 in theaters)

Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey

In this original Christmas musical, a toymaker and his granddaughter have to deal with the man’s latest invention which could change the holiday forever. Among the amazing cast are Forest Whitaker, Keegan-Michael Key, and Phylicia Rashad. (November 13 streaming on Netflix)

The Croods: A New Age

This Thanksgiving, you can see a movie with a cast that includes Nicolas Cage, Emma Stone, Ryan Reynolds, Catherine Keener, Cloris Leachman, Clark Duke, Leslie Mann, Peter Dinklage, and Kelly Marie Tran. They provide the voices in this sequel to the animated 2013 film about a caveman family who, this time around, meet their match in the form of a new family. (November 25 in theaters)

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The Christmas Chronicles 2

Two years after saving Christmas, a brother and sister will be called on again by Santa Claus to stop an evil villain who is threatening to destroy him. Kurt Russell is back as Santa and, most excitingly, he’s brought Goldie Hawn along as Mrs. Claus. (November 25 streaming on Netflix)

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December

Free Guy

Ryan Reynolds plays a video game NPC (non-player character) who gains consciousness and decides to save his game world. From director Shawn Levy, and co-starring Killing Eve’s Jodie Comer and Reynolds’ old Green Lantern pal Taika Waititi, this one has tons of potential. We aren’t sure if it’s actually going to come out in theaters. (December 11 in theaters)

Greenland

Who doesn’t love a good Gerard Butler disaster movie? We all do. And in this one, he attempts to survive a global apocalypse set off by a meteor strike. Gerald Butler armageddon? Yes, please. (December 18, on demand)

Soul

In the latest film from Pixar Animation Studios, a middle school teacher (Jamie Foxx) gets his big break in jazz and immediately dies. From there he and a lost soul (Tina Fey) explore what it means to be alive. We cannot wait for this one, but the rumor is it may come to streaming a la Mulan. We’ll have to wait and see. (December 25, Disney+)

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Wonder Woman 1984

Whether or not Wonder Woman 1984 is as good as its trailer makes it look, it’s our final chance of something good actually happening movie-wise in 2020. If everything else moves, as we expect, it all comes down to Christmas and Wonder Woman. Please, please, be safe to see. (December 25 in theaters)

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TBD 2020

Note: These are films scheduled to be released at some point before the end of the year, but don’t have a specific release date just yet.

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Connected

Masters of smart animated films Phil Lord and Chris Miller produced this new one which was recently pushed from its October release date. It follows a family on a road trip who have to save the world from a massive technological uprising. (In theaters)

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The Swarm

In this French horror film, a woman and her two young kids struggle to make a living as they raise locusts. One day, though, they realize their locusts aren’t normal locusts. These locusts suck blood! (Streaming on Netflix)

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The Midnight Sky

Based on a novel by Lily Brooks-Dalton, George Clooney plays a scientist who has to stop an astronaut (Felicity Jones) and her crew from returning home after returning to Earth. You see, they aren’t aware that the world has begun to mysteriously end while they were away. (Streaming on Netflix)

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Update October 16, 5:30 ET: We’ve removed No Time to Die, as that was moved to April, Dune, as it has moved to October, Voyagers and Connected. We’ve added dates and moved a few previously TBD films too.

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Entertainment Reporter for io9/Gizmodo

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DISCUSSION

I loved going to the movies, but I don’t see it being safe until 2022. Not liking it, but not chancing it either.

Maybe drive-ins will make a comeback.