Is the superhero domination of the Box Office likely to taper off any time soon? Not if the releases in the first half of 2018 are anything to go by.


Hollywood won't mind, though, as long as the bulked-up summer blockbusters can improve upon last summer's dire turnout (the worst in 10 years).

Before The Avengers and Deadpool get the summer off to a rousing start, however, there are a load of awards show contenders to get excited about, including Guillermo del Toro's Shape of the Water and Mary Magdalene, powerhouse performances from Frances McDormand and Daniel Day-Lewis in Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri and Phantom Thread respectively and Wes Anderson's long-awaited follow-up to The Grand Budapest Hotel.

Oh, and there's a Star Wars flick on the way, too...

Check out the biggest film releases in 2018 below.

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Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri - 6th January

Director: Martin McDonagh

In Bruges director McDonagh seamlessly weaves dark humour and drama in rural USA, with Frances McDormand shining as his irascible lead

Starring: Frances McDormand, Woody Harrelson, Sam Rockwell

Darkest Hour - 12th January

Director: Joe Wright

Oscar buzz is generating around Gary Oldman for his depiction of Winston Churchill in this flick from Atonement director Joe Wright

Starring: Gary Oldman, Ben Mendelsohn, Kristen Scott Thomas, Lily James

12 Strong - 23rd January

Director: Nicolai Fuglsig

Post September 11th war drama. A small troop of US soldiers in Afghanistan join forces with locals to fight the Taliban

Starring: Chris Hemsworth, Michael Shannon

Last Flag Flying - 26th January

Director: Richard Linklater

Former marines reunite to bury their former colleague's son

Starring: Steve Carrell, Bryan Cranston, Laurence Fishburne

Phantom Thread - 2nd February

Director: Paul Thomas Anderson

Daniel Day-Lewis teams up with his There Will Be Blood director for (supposedly) his final bow as a renowned dressmaker in 1950s London

Starring: Daniel Day-Lewis, Lesley Manville, Vicky Krieps

Fifty Shades Freed - 9th February

Director: James Foley

The final installment of EL Doctorow's s&m-friendly trilogy

Starring: Dakota Johnson, Jamie Dornan, Rita Ora

The Mercy - 9th February

Director: James Marsh

Theory of Everything director takes on the harrowing true story of a British man who embarks on a solo round-the-world sailing race. Spoiler alert: things don't quite go to plan

Starring: Colin Firth, Rachel Weisz

Shape of the Water - 16th February

Director: Guillermo del Toro

Another world-bending fairytale from a modern master

Cast: Sally Hawkins, Michael Shannon, Octavia Spencer

Annihilation - 23rd February

Director: Alex Garland

Following on from his breathtaking 2015 directorial debut Ex Machina, The Beach writer Alex Garland returns with a horror sci-fi fronted by Natalie Portman

Cast: Natalie Portman, Oscar Isaac, Tessa Thompson

Red Sparrow - 2nd March

Director: Francis Lawrence

Jennifer Lawrence stars as a Russian ballerina-turned spy who gets caught up with a CIA operative (Joel Edgerton)

Starring: Jennifer Lawrence, Joel Edgerton, Jeremy Irons

A Wrinkle in Time - 23rd March

Director: Ava DuVernay

Oprah Winfrey makes a rare silver-screen appearance in this star-studded Disney sci-fi adventure about a young girl who goes to space in search of her father

Starring: Oprah Winfrey, Mindy Kaling, Reese Witherspoon, Chris Pine, Zach Galifianakis, Storm Reid

Tomb Raider - 16th March

Director: Roar Uthaug

Another go at the 1990s video game franchise, this time with Oscar winner Alicia Vikander in the lead role as adventurous heiress Lara Croft. Sadly, it doesn't look any less silly than the previous attempt

Starring: Alicia Vikander, Dominic West, Walton Goggins

Mary Magdalene - 16th March

Director: Garth Davis

You can't make this up: Joaquin Phoenix stars as *literally* Jesus in the Lion director's Biblical epic

Starring: Rooney Mara, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Joaquin Phoenix

Isle of Dogs - 30th March

Director: Wes Anderson

Charming stop motion animation, quirked up to the nines

Starring: Scarlett Johannson, Greta Gerwig, Edward Norton, Tilda Swinton, Jeff Goldblum, Bill Murray

Ready Player One - 30th March

Director: Steven Spielberg

Tron, 2017

Starring: TJ Miller, Ben Mendelsohn, Olivia Cooke, Simon Pegg

April - June

The New Mutants - 12th April

Director: Josh Boone

X Men spin-off about five young mutants kept in a secret research facility against their will

Starring: Anya Taylor-Joy, Maisie Williams, Charlie Heaton

Avengers: Infinity War - 27th April

Directors: Anthony and Joe Russo

Can Marvel pull off the biggest, most jam-packed blockbuster in recent memory?

Starring: Scarlett Johansson, Robert Downey Jr, Benedict Cumberbatch, Chris Hemsworth, Chris Pratt, Chris Evans, Chadwick Boseman

Solo: A Star Wars Story - 25th May

Photo: Twitter, JG

Director: Ron Howard

The origin story of Star Wars fan-favourite Han Solo

Starring: Donald Glover, Emilia Clarke, Woody Harrelson, Phoebe Waller-Bridge

Deadpool 2 - 1st June

Director: David Leitch

Ryan Reynolds reprises his role as the sarky, wisecracking superhero

Starring: Ryan Reynolds, Josh Brolin, TJ Miller

Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom - 8th June

Director: JA Bayona

Chris Pratt returns as dino-friendly Navy veteran Owen Grady

Starring: Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas-Howard, Jeff Goldblum

Ocean's Eight - 22nd June

NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 07: Sandra Bullock, Cate Blanchett and Rihanna are seen filming 'Ocean's 8' in Central Park on November 7, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Raymond Hall/GC Images)
Rihanna, Cate Blanchett and Sandra Bullock on the set of Ocean's Eight

Director: Gary Ross

An all-female take on Steven Soderbergh's star-studded heist drama

Starring: Rihanna, Sandra Bullock, Cate Blanchett, Anne Hathaway, Helena Bonham-Carter, Mindy Kaling

July - September

Ant-Man and The Wasp - 6th July

SAN DIEGO, CA - JULY 26: (L-R) Actors Michael Douglas, Evangeline Lilly, Paul Rudd and Corey Stoll attend Marvel's Hall H Panel for "Ant-Man" during Comic-Con International 2014 at San Diego Convention Center on July 26, 2014 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images for Disney, BA)

Director: Peyton Reed

Paul Rudd and Evangeline Lilly return as miniature superheroes for a nice relaxing post-Avengers come down

Starring: Paul Rudd, Evangeline Lilly, Michael Douglas, Michelle Pfeiffer

The Incredibles 2 - 13th July

Director: Brad Bird

Mr Incredible is left to take care of their youngest child while Elastagirl is off saving the world

Starring: Craig T Nelson, Holly Hunter, Samuel L Jackson

Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again - 27th July

Director: Ol Parker

More high-camp fun, soundtracked by certified (albeit slightly brutalised) bangers from Swedish pop gods Abba

Starring: Meryl Streep, Colin Firth, Pierce Brosnan, Lily James, Cher

Mission: Impossible 6 - 27th July

Director: Christopher McQuarrie

Because five certainly wasn't enough

Starring: Tom Cruise, Henry Cavill, Simon Pegg, Vanessa Kirby, Rebecca Ferguson

Christopher Robin - 17th August

Director: Marc Forster

Ewan McGregor plays an all-grown-up version of Christopher Robin

Starring: Ewan McGregor, Mark Gatiss, Haley Atwell

Robin Hood - September

Director: Otto Bathurst

A gritty take on Robin Hood. We wait with a considerate amount of skepticism

Starring: Jamie Foxx, Taron Edgerton, Jamie Dornan

The Little Stranger - September

Director: Lenny Abrahamson

Coming off the back of heartbreaking hit Room, director Lenny Abrahamson returns with a take on another bit of gripping pop fiction - Sarah Waters' The Little Stranger, a gothic horror story set in 1940s Warwickshire

Starring: Domhnall Gleeson, Will Poulter, Charlotte Rampling, Ruth Wilson

October - December

Venom - 5th October

Director: Ruben Fleischer

Tom Hardy stars as Marvel superhero Eddie Brock AKA Venom

Starring: Tom Hardy, Michelle Williams, Jenny Slate, Riz Ahmed

First Man

Director: Damien Chazelle

The La La Land director teams up with Ryan Gosling once again for a biopic of astronaut Neil Armstrong. Surely one of the most hotly anticipated dramas of the year

Starring: Ryan Gosling, Claire Foy, Jon Bernthal, Kyle Chandler

X-Men: Dark Phoenix - 2nd November

Director: Simon Kinberg

Game of Thrones star Sophie Turner (Jean Grey) goes dark in the latest X-Men sequel

Starring: Jennifer Lawrence, Sophie Turner, Michael Fassbender

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald - 16th November

(Warner Bros)

Director: David Yates

The continued adventures of Newt Scamander

Starring: Eddie Redmayne, Johnny Depp, Jude Law, Katherine Waterston, Ezra Miller


Jason Momoa (Getty, BA)

Director: James Wan

Warner Bros plunge the depths to save the DC film universe after disappointing returns from Justice League

Starring: Jason Momoa, Amber Heard, Nicole Kidman, Willem Dafoe

Mary Poppins Returns - 21st December

Director: Rob Marshall

Mary (Emily Blunt) returns to visit Jane and Michael Banks (now fully grown) in 1940s depression-era London to help them deal with a personal loss


Starring: Emily Blunt, Lin Manuel-Miranda, Meryl Streep, Julie Walters, Colin Firth, Dick Van Dyke