By EW Staff
November 14, 2003 at 05:00 AM EST

History, they say, repeats itself. One look at the potential blockbusters in store for the 2003 holiday season proves it. So on the following pages, we examine how Hollywood has pilfered the past: Julia Roberts hearkens back to the Eisenhower era for ”Mona Lisa Smile,” Peter Weir directs the 19th-century epic ”Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World,” and our trove of set deconstructions includes a trip back to 1870s Japan for Tom Cruise’s ”The Last Samurai.” Ben Affleck, on the other hand, focuses on his future, including his new sci-fi thriller ”Paycheck.” Back in the here and now, Diane Keaton reunites with Jack Nicholson in the romance ”Something’s Gotta Give,” while three actresses (Evan Rachel Wood, Scarlett Johansson, and Ludivine Sagnier) redefine the role of ingenue. And don’t forget our trusty Oscar Watch and a calendar listing all new releases. Now those are dates to remember.