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2016 Fall Movie Preview: 17 Blockbusters and Popcorn Offerings To Check Out This Season

Looking for a fall movie with some blockbuster flair and popcorn appeal? We've got you covered.

“Doctor Strange,” November 4

"Doctor Strange"

“Doctor Strange”

Marvel

Marvel blockbusters can be a hit or miss game when we’re dealing with standalone adventures (for every “Iron Man,” we get a “Thor: The Dark World”), and yet it’s hard not to be looking forward to “Doctor Strange” given its star-studded cast. From lead Benedict Cumberbatch, who steps into the role of a doctor who is given mystical, time-jumping powers, to Rachel McAdams, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Mads Mikkelsen and Tilda Swinton, the ensemble might be Marvel’s best yet for an origin film. But can the movie survive the justified whitewashing backlash and Marvel’s affinity for weak villains? The pressure is on for “Doctor Strange” to deliver, and we have faith it just might. -ZS

“Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them,” November 18

Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them

“Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them”

Warner Bros.

Harry Potter might be missing in action, but Hollywood’s obsession with his magical world of witchcraft and wizardry is still going strong. A semi-prequel to J.K. Rowling’s beloved saga, the “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” is set more than 60 years before The Boy Who Lived was even born, jumping back in time and across the ocean to New York City circa 1926 to follow the familiarly named Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne) as the proto-Poké master arrives on our shores with a briefcase full of enchanted creatures. Written by Rowling herself, directed by Hogwarts alum David Yates, and glazed with the unforgettable twinkle of James Newton Howard’s score, this might not be a new Harry Potter movie, but it sure looks like the next best thing. -DE

“Bad Santa 2,” November 23

Bad Santa 2

“Bad Santa 2”

Jan Thijs / Broad Green Pictures / Miramax

Fans of director Terry Zwigoff’s 2003 hit comedy “Bad Santa” have been patiently waiting for a sequel since rumors about the project first surfaced back in 2012. This time around, Billy Bob Thornton’s sex-crazed alcoholic con man Willie Soke is donning the St. Nick suit to knock off a charity in Chicago with his elf sidekick Marcus (Tony Cox), who recently got out of prison early. Thornton and Cox star alongside Christina Hendricks, Kathy Bates and Brett Kelly, who reprises his role as the slow but lovable Thurman Merman, now a 21 years old. “Mean Girls” director Mark Waters directed the movie, which was co-written by Shauna Cross (“Whip It”), Doug Ellin (“Entourage”), John Phillips (“Dirty Grandpa”). -GW

“Moana,” November 23

Moana

“Moana”

Disney

The new Disney 3-D animated musical tells the story of young Moana (new-comer and native Hawaiian Auli’i Cravalho), a young navigator who sets sail for a fabled island and along the way teams up with her hero and demi-god Maui (Dwayne Johnson). The film is a mix of old and new for Disney. Directors John Musker and Ron Clements are Disney bedrock, having been the duo behind classics like “Little Mermaid” and “Aladdin.” On the music side things, the creator and star of the Broadway uber-hit “Hamiliton,” Lin-Manuel Miranda and first time composer Opetaia Foa’i are brought into the Disney fold, as they created original songs for “Moana” teaming up with multi-talented composer Mark Mancina. -CO

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