By Charly SHELTON
The year 2011 is over, and now there is a whole new batch of movies to look forward to.
Throughout the year, the Crescenta Valley Weekly will be giving you, our readers, a heads up on what movies to look for in the coming months.
Here is part one: January through March.
• “Woman in Black,” director James Watkins, starring Daniel Radcliffe.
Opens Feb. 3.
This dark Victorian horror story gives Daniel Radcliffe some work on screen without a wand for the first time since the Harry Potter franchise ended. In this, he is a lawyer who travels to a small town and discovers The Woman in Black – a not-so-happy haunt who is terrorizing the locals.
• “Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance,” directors Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor, starring Nicolas Cage.
Opens Feb. 17.
The sequel to 2007’s disappointment…uh, I mean movie…based on the comic book. Johnny Blaze (Nic Cage) is a stunt rider who was given demonic powers and a hell-raising motorcycle. He is charged with keeping the Earth safe from demons that escape from hell. But this time its no demon – its Satan himself who is trying to escape and take human form. We’ll have to see if this is as depressingly bad as the last one. It has so much potential, but with the directing team behind “Crank” and “Jonah Hex,” it will probably be unrealized.
• “The Lorax,” directors Chris Renaud and Kyle Balda, starring Zac Efron, Taylor Swift and Danny DeVito.
Opens March 2.
Not much is known about how the movie will differ from the classic Dr. Seuss book, other than it incorporates a child who discovers the Lorax, the fuzzy orange creature who fights for the environment. This is from the studio that brought us “Despicable Me.”
• “Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters,” director Tommy Wirkola, starring Jeremy Renner and Gemma Atrerton.
Opens March 2.
Fifteen years after their horrible experience with a witch, Hansel and Gretel are now famous bounty hunters who can take down any witch in the world. This horror/comedy crossover film is not necessarily going to be a huge, influential game changer, but it is such an interesting premise, it needs mentioning.
• “21 Jump Street,” directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller, starring Jonah Hill Channing Tatum, Ice Cube and Johnny Depp.
Opens March 16.
Based on the classic TV series that gave Johnny Depp his start, two cops are sent back to high school as students in an undercover ploy to bring down a drug ring. Johnny Depp has a cameo role in the movie remake of his show.
• “The Hunger Games,” director Gary Ross, starring Jennifer Lawrence
and Josh Hutcherson.
Opens March 23.
Based on the first book of the best selling series of the same name, this is going to be one of the big pre-summer releases to watch out for. Set in a future where children fight to the death for food on TV, Katniss Everdeen chooses to take her younger sister’s place in an upcoming match.
• “Wrath of the Titans,” director Jonathan Liebesman, starring Sam Worthington and Liam Neeson.
Opens March 30.
The sequel to the lack luster 2010 remake of the classic “Clash of the Titans,” we get a revamped cast this time with returning leading man Sam Worthington heading another quest to battle Greek Gods and monsters when he must rescue Zeus from the underworld and destroy a mutinous plot by Hades.
Join us in the spring for part two and the new movie previews for April-June 2012.