From Avengers to Veep, 12 of the most buzzed-about things to watch this spring

From big blockbusters to highly-anticipated reboots, 12 things we’re excited to watch this spring.

From big blockbusters to highly-anticipated reboots, 12 things we’re excited to watch this spring

This spring, the much-lauded final season of Game of Thrones launches, and it will finally answer long-awaited questions for fans of the show, including who will win the, well, game of thrones? (HBO)

Spring is officially here, and with it, a bevy of new films and TV shows. From the big blockbusters like Avengers: End Game and Game of Thrones to highly anticipated reboots like Dumbo and The Twilight Zone, here are 12 things we're excited to watch this spring. What are you most looking forward to? Let us know in the comments.

Us (March 22)

Jordan Peele will not be content until every last one of us is terrified. The visionary writer/director subverted the horror genre with his Oscar-winning film Get Out, and now he's putting his twist on the home invasion thriller. Us tells the story about what happens to a family when four masked strangers descend on their home, but where most invasion movies would use that as the main setup, Peele takes it one step further. When the masks come off, it's revealed that the invaders are actually the family's doppelgangers. It would seem that Peele was just getting warmed up with Get Out. As he's said in the past, Get Out was a documentary, Us is a horror film.

It should be noted that Peele is also working on a sequel to the classic '90s horror film Candyman, and rebooting The Twilight Zone (see below). — Jesse Kinos-Goodin

What We Do in the Shadows (March 27)

This mockumentary about bumbling modern-day vampires living in Wellington, New Zealand, was originally released in 2014 and quickly became a critical darling. Written, directed by and starring Jemaine Clement (Flight of the Conchords) and Taika Waititi (Thor: Ragnarok), it's ranked 68 on Rotten Tomatoes top 100 comedies of all time, and for good reason. If there was any film that deserved an expanded universe, this is it, which is why it's good news that FX is adapting the film for television. The action moves to New York, but the premise is the same: Interview with the Vampire meets The Office. It's telling that Mark Proksch, who has appeared on The Office as Dwight Schrute's lackey, will be playing an "energy vampire" with the power to either bore you with a long conversation or enrage you with his annoying habits. Clement and Waititi won't be reprising their onscreen roles from the New Zealand hit, but are signed on to write, direct and produce. — JKG

Dumbo (March 29)

As if there's nothing sacred in this age of gritty reboots, prequels and sequels, Disney's classic 1941 film Dumbo is now getting the live-action treatment. But here's the good news: it's directed by none other than Tim Burton and stars the likes of Danny DeVito as the circus ringleader and Michael Keaton as the ruthless entrepreneur who wants to exploit the lovable flying baby elephant. While the original Dumbo still holds up more than 70 years later, the Burton touch really looks to have added an extra element of magic to the timeless tale. Prepare your tissues, because nothing can prepare your emotions for that scene (you know the one). — JKG

Barry (March 31)

"Do you think I'm a bad person, Mr. Cousineau?" asks Barry Berkman, played by SNL alum Bill Hader, of his acting teacher (Henry Winkler). "I think you are deeply human and I pray that people can change their nature," answers Cousineau. "If they can't, you and I are in deep trouble." That's an epic understatement, given that the Barry title character is a hitman-turned-actor who hasn't exactly managed to leave his former life behind, but those in his new life don't know of his violent past. Both Hader and Winkler won Emmys for the critically acclaimed first season of the show, which also landed a nomination for best comedy series. If the trailer is any indication — it includes references to everything from Ariana Grande to Charles Manson, and plenty of dark humour — season two will be just as brutally funny. — Jennifer Van Evra

Twilight Zone (April 1)

Rod Serling's The Twilight Zone combined drama, suspense, sci-fi and horror so effectively that the 1950s and 1960s series left an indelible mark on generations of TV audiences and on pop culture more generally. There have been countless remakes since — two series revivals in 1985 and 2002, as well as a radio series, a TV movie and a feature film — but the latest reboot is really turning heads, thanks in large part to Get Out director Jordan Peele, who is hosting and producing the new CBS All Access show. Judging by the trailer, which interrupted this year's Super Bowl, The Twilight Zone — which features guest appearances by Parks and Recreation actor Adam Scott, Fargo's Allison Tolman, Tracy Morgan and Seth Rogan, to name a few — will have all the wonderful unease of the classic series with a decidedly 21st century look and feel. Also keep an eye out for acclaimed Canadian child actor Jacob Tremblay, and for Canadian backgrounds, because the show was shot in Vancouver. — JVE

Killing Eve (April 7)

Just weeks after Canadian actress Sandra Oh took home groundbreaking honours at the Golden Globes, Screen Actors Guild and Critics' Choice awards for her role on Killing Eve, the tense crime drama returns for the feverishly anticipated second season. The series stars Oh as an M15 officer named Eve who is obsessed with an assassin, aptly named Villanelle (Jodie Comer), who returns the infatuation — all while sharing a penchant for luxury goods. If the dramatic trailer is any indication — it includes Eve admitting she might have killed Villanelle, Villanelle about to stab someone with a large kitchen knife, and someone in a weird pig costume on a bed — Season 2 will seriously crank up the creep. — JVE

Game of Thrones (April 14)

It's been nine years since George R.R. Martin's saga of sex, violence, politics and more violence, white walkers and dragons (did we mention violence?) hit the screen. With accolades including 47 Emmys, a Golden Globe and a Peabody Award, it is one of the most critically acclaimed shows of its era. This spring, the much-lauded final season launches, which will finally answer the long-awaited questions for fans of the show, such as who will win the, well, game of thrones? Season eight will also reportedly include the longest battle sequence in TV history, which took the crew 11 weeks to shoot. That battle will be seen on episode three, "The Battle of Winterfell," which, at one hour and 22 minutes, will also make it the longest episode of Game of Thrones. While we have no idea how the show will end, one thing for certain is that the producers are certainly going to make sure it's memorable. — JKG

Avengers: End Game (April 26)

Whether you're a fan of of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) or not, there is no doubting the cultural impact that more than 10 years of interconnected superhero films have had, both on the box office and on how studios roll out superhero films. Instead of planning around one blockbuster action movie at a time, other studios such as DC/Warner Bros., 20th Century Fox and Sony have learned the value in the Marvel model and begun creating long-term plans built around mega-franchises that contain several interconnected features. For better or worse, this is the future of superhero films, all due to the unprecedented success of the Avengers franchise. Now we just have to see if End Game can deliver the payoff that fans have been waiting for since Robert Downey Jr.'s Iron Man debuted in 2008.

Catch-22 (May 17) 

Since its release in 1961, Joseph Heller's satirical novel Catch-22 has also seen multiple adaptations for stage and screen, and a new Hulu miniseries produced and directed by George Clooney has returned it to the fore. The story follows World War II U.S. Air Force bombardier Yossarian, who isn't only fighting the enemy, but also an army that continually piles on the missions the servicemen must fly. If Yossarian tries to avoid his assignments, however, he'll be in violation of Catch-22 — a no-win bureaucratic rule. "A man is considered insane if he willingly continues to fly dangerous combat missions," explained Hulu in a statement, "but a request to be removed from duty is evidence of sanity and therefore makes him ineligible to be relieved from duty." Also starring as Col. Cathcart, Clooney says the series, while darkly comic, doesn't gloss over the horrors of war. "There's no way you can do this half-assed. It's a pretty gruesome business, war is," he said in an interview. "The horror and hilarity becomes even more pronounced. The horror becomes even bigger and hopefully funnier, as well," added fellow producer Grant Heslov, who also directs two episodes. "We wanted to keep the tone real." — JVE

Rocketman (May 31)

Like it or not, we're currently in the age of the music biopic. And with the success of Bohemian Rhapsody at the Oscars this year, it's no surprise. While there was a point where biopics wouldn't come until after the entertainer had passed, including acclaimed films like La Bamba, Ray and Walk the Line, a new lineup of films have the distinction of being in direct contact with the musicians being portrayed. Even the surviving members of Queen consulted on Bohemian Rhapsody. Elton John's Rocketman, however, goes one step further and was developed by the man himself. Rocketman promises to tell the origin story of Elton John, focusing on his early awkward years through to his songwriting partnership with Bernie Taupin, his personal struggles with substance abuse and his openness with his sexuality. Dexter Fletcher, who stepped in to finish Bohemian Rhapsody once controversial director Bryan Singer was fired, was hired to direct, while Taron Egerton (Kingsman) will play John, and will reportedly sing the classic songs himself. Based on the trailer, it sounds like he's up to the task. — JKG

Veep (March 31)

All good things must come to an end, and Veep, the bitingly hilarious political satire starring Julia Louis-Dreyfus, is no exception. Set in the office of narcissistic and vindictive U.S. president Selina Meyer, who is played by the Seinfeld legend, for six seasons the show has followed Meyer's team as they scratched their way into power, bitterly fought elections, and tangled themselves in scandal. Eventually Meyer left office, and tried to secure a legacy by penning a memoir and launching a foundation, but now she has announced another run for the presidency. The show was launched long before the current political chaos south of the border, but at times it cut eerily close to reality; there's no doubt the Emmy-winning show's final season won't pull any political punches. "Leon, I'm not sure about this part where I say I want to be president for all Americans. I mean, do I? You know, all of them?" asks Meyer in the season trailer. "How about real Americans?" replies her staffer. "Oh yeah, that's good," replies Meyer, "and then we can figure out what I mean later." — JVE

Pet Sematary (April 5)

As if one film version of Stephen King's ultra creepy horror novel Pet Sematary wasn't enough for several lifetimes, directors Kevin Kölsch and Dennis Widmyer have unearthed the tale of an animal graveyard in the woods and returned it to the big screen. In an interview, King once said if he had the choice, he wouldn't have published the original book: "It's a terrible book — not in terms of the writing, but it just spirals down into darkness. It seems to be saying that nothing works and nothing is worth it, and I don't really believe that." The new film promises glimmers of hope, but it will take a few seriously scary twists, and a whole lot of digging, to find them. "The ground is bad," says star John Lithgow, who plays the classic character Jud Crandall, in the trailer. "It brings things back. Sometimes dead is better." — JVE


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