Gal Gadot and Dwayne Johnson
Gal Gadot and Dwayne Johnson Image Credit: Netflix

With the pandemic still causing disruption in the force, Netflix has chosen to double down on its yearly offering by surprising fans globally with a star-studded slate for 2021 that includes 70 new film.

Top-billed stars from Hollywood and Bollywood are all part of the 2021 roster, with names such as Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson, Ryan Reynolds, Leonardo DiCaprio, Gal Gadot, Meryl Streep, Idris Elba, Priyanka Chopra Jonas, Jennifer Lawrence, Sandra Bullock and more. Phew!

Idris Elba in Concrete Cowboy Image Credit: Netflix

Coupled with these star-studded are filmmakers such as Zack Snyder, who is bringing his ‘Army of the Dead’ to the small screen, along with Joe Wright, Antoine Fuqua, Shawn Levy, Robert Pulcini, among others. Directorial debuts from Halle Berry and Lin-Manuel Miranda are also on the cards.

With the cinema business still in limbo in the wake of the pandemic, the streaming giant has taken advantage of the market demand and rolled out this unprecedented slate.

Last Letter From Your Lover Image Credit: Netflix

Among the most-anticipated titles is ‘Don’t Look Up’, from filmmaker Adam McKay of ‘The Big Short’ and ‘Vice’ fame and starring DiCaprio. The film tells the story of two low-level astronomers, who must go on a giant media tour to warn mankind of an approaching comet that will destroy planet earth.

‘The Harder They Fall’, a Western co-produced by Jay-Z and with a primarily Black cast including Regina King and Elba, also promises to be one to look out for.

But the list included premiere dates for only 10 of the titles — from early January to mid-March.

Army of the dead 1-1610519330505
Zack Snyder directs 'Army of the Dead' Image Credit: Netflix

Genres vary as well, with Netflix a zombie apocalypse (‘Army of the Dead’), cowboys (‘Concrete Cowboy’), and high school romance (including the culmination of the ‘To All the Boys’ and ‘The Kissing Booth’ trilogies).

The slate is reintroducing the teen screams movies (‘Fear Street’ trilogy, ‘There’s Someone Inside Your House’), turning favourite books into films (‘The Woman in the Window’, ‘Munich’, ‘The Last Letter from Your Lover’), bringing more adrenalin-pumping blockbusters (‘Red Notice’, ‘Sweet Girl’, ‘Kate’) and giving the family another reason to watch films together (‘YES DAY’, ‘Back to the Outback’, ‘Finding ‘Ohana’).

Film premiere dates have only been mentioned until March. However, this doesn’t stop us from being excited about quite a few movies listed.

Malcolm & Marie Image Credit: Netflix

Johnson, Gadot and Reynolds will appear in ‘Red Notice’, an action film with a $160 million budget, according to US media. It is unclear whether the film, along with others mentioned on the roster, could also get a cinematic release as well.

Other movies that have us cheering includes the Rajkummar Rao and Priyanka Chopra starrer, ‘The White Tiger’, which has received high praise from early reviews. The film, adapted from Aravind Adiga’s novel, drops on January 22.

The White Tiger Image Credit: Netflix

Other movies that we can get behind include ‘The Woman in the Window’, starring Amy Adams, the thriller ‘Escape from Spiderhead’ (Chris Hemsworth), ‘Malcolm & Marie’ that drops on February 5 and is already generating an Oscar buzz for Zendaya, ‘Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles’.

Actress Berry’s directorial debut ‘Bruised’ follows a former MMA fighter struggling to regain custody of her son and restart her athletic career.

— With inputs from AFP