So, the curtain is coming to a close on 2015; what has been a truly spectacular 12 months of film. However, as this record breaking year comes to an end, it's now that time of year again where we look ahead to all the releases of 2016 and it's time for my most anticipated films of the year.

During 2015, we reunited with The Avengers in Age of Ultron, went for a crazy ride in Mad Max: Fury Road and, recently, even returned to "a galaxy far, far away" with the arrival of the long-awaited The Force Awakens. And for a reflection of the year, you can check out my best and worst lists. However, next year is set to be even bigger and even more monumental, with the return of Deadpool or the first-ever film featuring both Batman and Superman. We're even set to get both a Star Trek and a Star Wars film in the same year too!

Of course, with all the hundreds of films coming out next year, selecting a mere few as my most anticipated was difficult. I considered around 50 movies or so and it was a real task cherry-picking the fine frontrunners but it has been done and I'm rather satisfied by my choices too. It's a subjective list and all based on my personal excitement for these films. However, having narrowed down a top 10 ranging from indie films to blockbusters, it just showcases the true "potential" of 2016 in film - which is certainly going to be big.

But, without further ado, let's just in to my most anticipated films of the year, starting off with some honourable mentions and films to look out - albeit if just not managing to quite slip into my top 10.

RELEASE DATE: July 22nd, 2016.

One of the world's greatest storytellers, Steven Spielberg, brings us the classic novel, by another great storyteller, Roald Dahl, The BFG, on the big screen. This looks like a magical, awe-inspired return to form for Spielberg. How can you not be excited about this film?

RELEASE DATE: August 12th, 2016.

With a stellar ensemble featuring Bryce Dallas Howard and Robert Redford, Disney's live-action Pete's Dragon remake has lots of promise. It's a risky one, since we know and have seen nothing from the film, but if it goes well, we could have a real treat on our hands.

RELEASE DATE: September 27th, 2016.

The 1960's original was an incredible Western. Throw in Antoine Fuqua on directing duties and arguably one of the best casts of the year and The Magnificent Seven remake is a force to be reckoned with.

RELEASE DATE: July 22nd, 2016.

It's the third film in the rebooted Star Trek franchise, what's not to like? After the lukewarm Into Darkness, let's hope this goes Beyond that and back to how this franchise should be. The teaser trailer wasn't great though so we'll just have to wait and see. Let's hope the studio were holding back.

RELEASE DATE: March 23rd, 2016.

This is the first time ever that two of most iconic heroes in comic-book history - Batman and Superman - will share the screen, let alone the fact that they will go at odds with one another. However, it's a risky move and one that I feel as though I could potentially get burned by, should I let my expectations get too high.

RELEASE DATE: January 28th, 2016.

I loved both Kung Fu Panda and Kung Fu Panda 2 and the third looks to continue the success of the franchise with perhaps the most epic and funniest instalment yet.

RELEASE DATE: April 15th, 2016.

This was in my most anticipated of 2015 list, before it got pushed to 2016. Honestly, after Boyhood, I'm sold on anything Richard Linklater does and Everybody Wants Some sounds like a real gem.

RELEASE DATE: March 18th, 2016.

A Ben Wheatley film, starring Tom Hiddleston, based on the 1975 novel by J.G Ballard. The first footage was exciting. Sign me up.

RELEASE DATE: June 15th, 2016.

It's a buddy-cop comedy starring Kevin Hart and the most charismatic man on Earth, Dwayne Johnson. It looks absolutely HILARIOUS. Need I say more?

RELEASE DATE: February 26th, 2016.

The notorious Coen Brothers script and direct this comedy, with a stellar cast on hand to bring it to life. Honestly, I'll be excited for anything Joel and Ethan Coen work on, let alone a comedy returning to their roots.

So, that's the honourable mentions - eclipsed by my main choices. It's now time to move on to my top 10. It's a personal list but I do feel as though it's a good one; I have my reasons for each and every film, which we shall discuss below.

TOP 10:
DIRECTOR: Justin Kurzel.

STARRING: Michael Fassbender, Marion Cotillard, Brendan Gleeson.

RELEASE DATE: December 21st, 2016.

I could get burned with this choice, seeing as it's a video-game adaption. However, the source material is great (fun fact: the original Assassin's Creed was the first game I ever played that was rated above my actual age) and considering it re-teams Michael Fassbender with director Justin Kurzel and Marion Cotillard for this, all of whom he worked together on the beautiful and incredible Macbeth, there's no reason not to be excited for Assassin's Creed. Not only am I a fan of films but video-games too and this film looks set to finally be the one to break Hollywood's game-to-film adaption curse. Here's to hoping!


DIRECTOR: Damien Chazelle

STARRING: Ryan Gosling, Emma Stone, J.K Simmons.

RELEASE DATE: July 14th, 2016.

Whiplash was one of my favourite films of 2015, without a shadow of doubt. I adored it. After that film, you can guarantee that I'll be excited for anything else that director Damien Chazelle releases and, his next film, La La Land is no exception. Not only does J.K Simmons return to reteam with the director (after his award-stealing role as Terence Fletcher) but you have Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone as our pair of leads - that's a whole lot of charisma. The pair were dazzling in Crazy, Stupid Love too so I can't wait to see them work together yet again. With another music-related premise, this is right in Chazelle's ballpark and I'm excited. Let's hope he continues his great track record.

DIRECTOR: Jon Favreau.

STARRING: Bill Murray, Christopher Walken, Idris Elba.

RELEASE DATE: April 15th, 2016.

Over the past couple of years, Disney have been trying their hand at something a little different - live-action remakes of animated classics. So far, it has proven a success with Alice in Wonderland, Maleficent and the recent Cinderella all proving the studio know what they're doing. The next to join this list, Jon Favreau's live-action The Jungle Book looks like the best yet. The cast is amazing and the first footage we saw was breathtaking. The entire film was shot on a sound stage but the CG all looks very real and impressive and it seems as though this will be another great live-action adaption of a classic and, as a fan of The Jungle Book animations, I can't wait to see this one.

DIRECTOR: David Yates.

STARRING: Eddie Redmayne, Katherine Waterston, Colin Farrell.

RELEASE DATE: November 11th, 2016.

I loved the Harry Potter novels and the films too! 4 years since the franchise ended and we're finally set to return to the Wizarding World. Just that idea alone is enough to get me excited. However, with a script by J.K Rowling, David Yates - who helmed 4 of the 8 Harry Potter films - returning to direct and a stellar cast, this has rocketed into my most anticipated of next year. That first teaser was magical and wonderful too and I'm very much excited to be launched back into this world with this new franchise.

DIRECTOR: Joe Russo, Anthony Russo.

STARRING: Chris Evans, Robert Downey Jr., Anthony Mackie.

RELEASE DATE: April 27th, 2016.

My favourite film in the MCU has to be The Winter Soldier. Bring back the directors for the follow-up and you can count me in. Throw in Marvel's huge Civil War plot-line and this film is one not to be missed. With Robert Downey Jr. reprising his role as Tony Stark for the film, set to butt heads with Chris Evans' Steve Rogers, this is Marvel's Batman v Superman equivalent. The first trailer was pretty epic too. However, Age of Ultron (what had been one of my most anticipated films of 2015) was a disappointment so I'm being a little skeptical with this. Here's to hoping it's on the same level as The Winter Soldier.

DIRECTOR: Mortem Tyldum.

STARRING: Jennifer Lawrence, Chris Pratt, Laurence Fishburne.

RELEASE DATE: December 21st, 2016.

Two of the industry's biggest current stars are Chris Pratt and Jennifer Lawrence. Put the two together in an ingenious and fun sounding sci-fi, from the director of 2014's dazzling The Imitation Game and Passengers is shaping up to be a must-see film. As a huge fan of Pratt and of Lawrence, I cannot wait to see the two work together and I loved The Imitation Game and am excited to see what Mortem Tyldum directs next. Besides, we need more unique ideas and original films and last year's Ex Machina showed that this genre can be something special when it's ingenious and audacious and, with all the talent backing this one, this is shaping up to be pretty wonderful too.

DIRECTOR: Bryan Singer.

STARRING: Jennifer Lawrence, Michael Fassbender, James McAvoy, Oscar Isaac.

RELEASE DATE: May 1st, 2016.

I'm a big fan of the X-Men films - most especially the new, prequel trilogy. First Class was incredible, as was 2014's Days of Future Past - one of my favourite films of that year. Now concluding the trilogy and the saga is what looks to be possibly the biggest and best X-Men film yet: Apocalypse. There's no one better suited to direct one of these films than Bryan Singer, who's returning for the project. Throw in one of the biggest X-Men villain yet - the eponymous Apocalypse - with the stellar young cast all set to return and this is easily one of my most anticipated films of 2016. If it's anywhere as good as it's predecessors, we'll have a great film on our hands with this one.

DIRECTOR: Tim Miller.

STARRING: Ryan Reynolds, T.J Miller, Ed Skrein.

RELEASE DATE: February 4th, 2016.

Whilst the X-Men prequel trilogy may be coming to an end next year, another X-Men hero's story is only just beginning - Deadpool. That's right, the infamous and iconic and beloved Merc with a mouth is FINALLY getting his big-screen solo outing. After his poor, disastrous representation in X-Men Origins: Wolverine (yikes!), Deadpool looks to finally do the character justice in an utterly violent, gory, swear-y, epic, fourth-wall breaking adaption. Known for his wit and sarcasm and motor mouth, as well as his relentless approach to being a "hero", this adaption looks to stick close to the source material and give fans the film they've been waiting years to see. As a huge comic-book fan, I can't wait to see Ryan Reynolds in the suit as Deadpool. Everything we've seen so far looks promising and epic and exciting and I'm excited for this film.

DIRECTOR: Gareth Edwards.

STARRING: Felicity Jones, Mads Mikkelsen, Forest Whitaker.

RELEASE DATE: December 14th, 2016.

It's no secret that I'm a Star Wars MEGA fan - The Force Awakens was one of my favourite films of 2015. It's perhaps my favourite cinematic franchise out there so, of course, Rogue One is going to be on my most anticipated of 2016 list. I can't wait for this film. The ensemble is stellar and the premise sounds awesome - it's basically a heist film set in the Star Wars universe, set between Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope. However, Gareth Edwards has said that it is a Star Wars film for a reason so the fact that they're not just using the name but are actually aiming to capture the magic of the franchise is what excites me about this film most. I had a fun time building up to Episode VII and the film was incredible too so, after that experience, I'm looking forward to this film greatly and have high expectations from the first Star Wars spin-off.

DIRECTOR: David Ayer.

STARRING: Will Smith, Margot Robbie, Cara Delevingne, Jared Leto.

RELEASE DATE: August 4th, 2016.

So, there it is folks. My most anticipated film of 2016 is none other than DC's Suicide Squad, for various reasons. As is probably evident by this list, I'm a fan of comic-book films. However, in a year over-saturated by superhero flicks, Suicide Squad is the silver lining. As David Ayer said at Comic-con, "this good versus bad shit is so played out. It's time for bad meets evil" and that's exactly what this film is. We've seen heroes assemble but not once have we ever seen a film dedicated solely to villains and DC, unarguably, have the advantage over Marvel for having much better villains. Not only that, but the cast is incredible. Margot Robbie and Cara Delevingne are two of my favourite actresses working today and Will Smith and Jared Leto are both phenomenal actors too that I love watching work. The Joker is also one of my favourite comic-book characters ever and Leto's portrayal looks pretty fun. The teaser trailer was dark and gritty and exciting and epic and if anyone can do these characters justice, it's David Ayer and, after Fury, I'll look forward to anything he does. The point is, Suicide Squad is shaping up to be a really special and unique comic-book adaption; everything about this film is very promising and I cannot wait to see it, more so than every other film releasing in 2016!

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About the Author

Awais Irfan
Founder of Oasis Awais, and avid lover of life, Awais Irfan's love of writing and film is unequivocal. Ever since he was a little kid, he has loved the cinematic experience; so much so, he is studying Film Production in Glasgow and hopes to be the next "big thing" in directing.

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