While the gaming world tends to slow down and catch its breath in December, the film and TV industry tends to be the opposite. To that end, this December contains a whole list of exciting projects to see in cinemas and on streaming services, so let’s dive into the latest Screen Time of 2023.
But before we begin, a quick reminder. We based our picks on a British release calendar, so be sure to check for accurate local listings and dates. Now that that’s out of the way, let’s move on.
Candy Cane Lane [Prime Video]- December 1
We’ve seen a bit of a resurgence of Eddie Murphy lately, with the actor appearing in various films and projects. In December, we’ll get the next evolution of that, when Murphy headlines Prime Video’s big Christmas movie, a film in which he brings to life the 12 Days of Christmas.
Wonka – December 8
The story of how Willy Wonka became. Timothée Chalamet shines as the titular lead in this colorful film from the producer of Harry Potter, a film that explores how Willy founded and created his chocolate empire while overcoming the threats of what can best be described as the chocolate mafia.
Leave the world behind [Netflix] – December 8
Netflix has brought together the talented trio of Julia Roberts, Mahershala Ali and Ethan Hawke for its latest big drama effort. Leave the World Behind sees a family’s relaxing getaway take an ominous turn when a cyberattack disconnects them from the rest of the world just as two strangers appear on their doorstep.
Chicken Run: Dawn of the Nugget – Dec. 8
In Aardman’s sequel Chicken Run, which hits theaters a week before its debut on Netflix, the gang breaks into a battery farm to rescue a bunch of trapped chickens and bring them to their new island sanctuary. Starring Zachary Levi and Thandiwe Newton, Chicken Run: Dawn of the Nugget promises to be an exciting adventure.
Godzilla Minus One – December 15
As Warner Bros. continues to flesh out its Monsterverse, Toho Co. has decided to put its own spin on the iconic monster story as well. Godzilla Minus One is a terrifying film in which Japan tries to prevent the raging primordial lizard from tearing the country apart after World War II.
The Family Subscription [Apple TV+] – December 15
In Apple TV+’s big new addition for December, Mark Wahlberg stars as a suburban father with a secret. The Family Plan sees Wahlberg trying to protect his family once his life as a former hitman catches up with him and threatens their safety.
Maestro [Netflix] – December 20
Bradley Cooper finds himself back in the director’s chair and in front of the camera for his next big film, Maestro. This film explores the life of composer Leonard Bernstein and his relationship with actress Felicia Montealegre Cohn Bernstein, played here by Carey Mulligan.
Percy Jackson and the Olympians [Disney+] – December 20
Rick Riordan’s fantasy novels have been adapted countless times before, but that doesn’t stop Disney from trying as well. Percy Jackson and the Olympians is a series coming to Disney+ that follows young demigod Percy as he races across America to prevent all-out war between the gods of Olympus.
Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom – Dec. 21
The last major film in this era of the DC Extended Universe, Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom will also be the last time we see Jason Momoa as the ocean protector. This film sees Aquaman once again facing a vengeful Black Manta, and in this film, he also tries to get married and prevent former Oceanmaster Orm from escaping his confinement.
Rebel Moon – Part One: A Child of Fire [Netflix] – December 22
In the first chapter of Zack Snyder’s sci-fi story, Rebel Moon – Part One: A Child of Fire, Sofia Boutella goes to the stars as she tries to defend a peaceful settlement from a tyrannical invading force. Part Two will be released on Netflix in December and is scheduled for release in early 2024.
Marvel’s What If…? (Season 2) [Disney+] – Dec. 22
The second season of Marvel’s hypothetical animated series explores what might have happened if crucial moments in the Marvel Cinematic Universe had actually played out in a different way. This next series of episodes features several returning live-action cast members lending their voices to their respective animated counterparts.
Next goal wins – Dec. 26
Taika Waititi directs Michael Fassbender in this sports comedy film documenting the notoriously awful American Samoa soccer team, best known for losing a World Cup qualifier 31-0 in 2001. Fassbender revolves around their campaign at the 2014 World Cup and portrays a hapless coach signed to help improve the team’s efforts.
The boy and the heron – Dec. 26
Hayao Miyazaki and Studio Ghibli are at it again for an all-new animated outing in which a young boy and a heron travel through a world shared by the living and the dead in hopes of finding his mother. The Boy and the Heron features a stacked British cast, including Christian Bale, Mark Hamill, Robert Pattinson, Gemma Chan, Florence Pugh, Willem Dafoe, Dave Bautista and more.
Ferrari – December 26
Adam Driver stars as Enzo Ferrari in crisis in Michael Mann’s biopic about the famed Italian supercar manufacturer. Ferrari follows events as Enzo and his team push their vehicles and creations to the limit in an attempt to win the challenging and treacherous 1,000-mile Mille Miglia race across Italy.
Pokémon Concierge [Netflix] – December 28
Netflix is giving its subscribers a double helping of stop-motion animated goodness in December, as following Chicken Run 2, The Pokémon Company is teaming up with the streamer to debut a series that follows the adventures of Haru, a janitor at a Pokémon Resort as she spends time with the humans and pocket monsters that visit.
And there we have it, another year of Screen Times in the books. While we wait until the new year to see what January 2024 has to offer, you can join us later this month for a glimpse of the biggest theatrical films that will make their arrival during 2024.