Can A Song Save Your Life?
Keira Knightley and Adam Levine play lovers and aspiring musicians who break up after he gets famous. Depressed, she channels all her sorrows into a song that catches the ear — and heart — of a drunken label exec (Mark Ruffalo), in director John Carney’s first musical since 2007’s Once. ”[John] really comes from music, so there’s a punk-rock quality to him,” says Ruffalo. ”There was a lot fo playing around with how dark we can go with the situation against the lightness of the story.” —Jeff Labrecque
Get On Up
In Tate Taylor’s follow-up to 2011’s The Help, it’s a man’s world. Not normally a fan of biopics, the director soon discovered that the life of the late Godfather of Soul, James Brown, was anything but by the numbers. “The man’s story is just mind-boggling,” he says. “It’s so much more than just ‘Sex Machine’ and ‘I Feel Good.'” Chadwick Boseman, who brought stoic dignity to Jackie Robinson in last year’s 42, gets to cut loose playing Brown (interestingly, Boseman and Brown are natives of South Carolina). “Chad’s having so much fun. Jackie has left the building!” says Taylor. And he reenlisted his Help stars Viola Davis and Octavia Spencer to play, respectively, Brown’s mother and the brothel-running aunt who raised him. —Karen Valby
Jersey Boys (6/20)
John Lloyd Young reprises his Tony-winning turn as young Frankie Valli in a bio-musical about the Four Seasons directed by (surprise!) Clint Eastwood.
In this modern-day retelling, 10-year-old Quvenzhané Wallis stars as the tomorrow-minded orphan who melts the heart of a billionaire (Jamie Foxx).
Into the Woods (12/25)
It’s agony waiting for Rob Marshall (Chicago) to bring Stephen Sondheim’s fairy-tale yarn to the screen, with Meryl Streep as the Witch and Johnny Depp as the Wolf.