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Sci-Fi Movies That We Can't Wait To See In 2023

If there's one thing we know for sure, it's that people love science fiction movies. This genre has proven to be an enduring staple of American cinema with multiple record-breaking films being part of the ever-growing genre. In the past few decades alone we'd have blockbusters such as "Avatar," "Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens," ”Transformers," and "The Hunger Games" all smashing at the box office thanks to their high-concept stories of space, robots, and dystopian worlds.

While 2022 was a great year for movies with box office hits like "Top Gun: Maverick," "Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness," and "Black Panther: Wakanda Forever" it was also a respectable year for the sci-fi genre. One of the biggest releases of the year was Jordan Peele's sci-fi horror flick "Nope," which starred Daniel Kaluuya and Kiki Palmer as two siblings being tormented by a strange unidentified flying object. Other examples of original science fiction in 2022 were A24's "Everything Everywhere all at Once," "Crimes of the Future," and "Prey."

With all that being said, the new year is looking to be even bigger for sci-fi lovers out there. There are tons of exciting new projects in the works that'll take audiences from the far reaches of space to the bottom of the sea, and everywhere in between. While some of the upcoming sci-fi movies are part of already established intellectual properties, just as many are totally fresh takes on the genre. Read on to find out all the sci-fi movies we can't wait to see in 2023.

Dune: Part Two

One of the most highly anticipated movies of 2023 has got to be "Dune: Part Two," the follow-up sequel to 2021's massive adaptation of Frank Herbert's science fiction magnum opus. Both "Dune" and "Dune: Part Two" come to us from critically acclaimed director Denis Villeneuve, a man who's no stranger to sci-fi having created incredible films under his belt like "Arrival" and "Blade Runner: 2049." "Dune" is the story of a royal family in the distant future that is exiled to a remote desert planet of Arrakis, which is home to everything from the enigmatic native Fremen, giant hostile sandworms, and a precious interstellar resource called spice.

Because of the massive nature of the story from the original book, Villeneuve decided to break his films into two parts in order to give these characters justice. "Dune: Part Two" will continue where the last film left off as audiences will follow Paul Atreides and Chani as they lead a revolution of the Fremen against the planetary occupation of the evil House Harkonnen. The lead role of Paul Atreides is played by Timothée Chalamet, with a supporting cast of top-tier acting talent including Zendaya, Rebecca Ferguson, Stellan Skarsgård, Josh Brolin, Dave Bautista, and Oscar Isaac in the first installment alone. In the upcoming sequel, the cast has gained even more star power with Florence Pugh, Léa Seydoux, Christopher Walken, and Austin Butler (hot off his performance as Elvis Presley in "Elvis").

M3GAN

Following in the footsteps of sci-fi horror movies about artificial intelligence such as "Ex Machina," "The Terminator," and "Willy's Wonderland" comes Gerard Johnstone's "M3GAN." The story follows the creation of a seemingly perfect robotic doll which is supposed to serve as an ideal friend for kids and even a possible babysitter for parents, but soon the evil android begins to take on a mind of its own. The most obvious comparison for "M3GAN" is to the other iconic horror franchise featuring an evil toy, "Child's Play," and there's even been some online beef between the Twitter accounts for both Chucky and M3GAN (to hilarious effect).

"M3GAN" is the brainchild of Akela Cooper and James Wan, the latter of which has become well-known for his work on franchise fare, such as "Saw," "The Conjuring," "Fast and Furious," and "Aquaman." Since it's produced by Blumhouse, the production company which has backed every Jordan Peele film to-date, this movie brings back one of the leads of "Get Out" for a starring role in "M3GAN" as well with Allison Williams. It also features the talent of Violet McGraw, Ronny Chieng, Brian Jordan Alvarez, Jenna Davis, and Amie Donald as the main characters of this horror flick.

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3

Hot off the heels of their recent Holiday Special, it's almost time to check back in with everyone's favorite team of multi-species interstellar heroes in next year's "Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3." With James Gunn back at the helm of the series he created back in 2014, Marvel has allowed the Guardians to have one last hurrah with the finale to their trilogy taking place after the events of both "Avengers: Endgame" and "Thor: Love and Thunder." Part three of the series brings back all the main stars from previous appearances including Chris Pratt as Starlord, Zoe Saldaña as Gamora, Vin Diesel as Groot, Dave Bautista as Drax, Bradley Cooper as Rocket, Karen Gillan as Nebula, and many more.

Taking place in the far reaches of space within the Marvel Cinematic Universe, "Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3" continues where the past two films left off following the ongoing story of this unlikely superhero team. It also requires some knowledge of movies outside this series to fully understand what's going on, since these characters were deeply affected by the events of both "Avengers: Infinity War," "Avengers: Endgame," and "Thor: Love and Thunder." For example, the original Gamora was killed by her adoptive father Thanos during the infinity war and was later replaced by an earlier version of the character from a different timeline. Since Starlord and Gamora were developing a pretty serious romance, this new dynamic will surely play a part in the next installment. It's also important to know how much drama there was behind the scenes regarding James Gunn since he was fired and, subsequently, rehired throughout production.

Transformers: Rise of the Beasts

Autobots, roll out! That's probably what at least one giant shape-shifting robot will say in the next edition of the massive "Transformers" franchise. It seems like only yesterday that audiences were watching Shia LeBeouf stumble around big GCI robots back in Michael Bay's 2007 "Transformers" adaptation, and now there's been six mainline movies and one "Bumblebee" spinoff for fans to enjoy. Now, Paramount Pictures is continuing the story with 2023's "Transformers: Rise of the Beasts" which will function as a sequel to "Bumblebee" since it takes place sometime in the 1990s with all new characters who've never been seen before.

"Transformers: Rise of the Beasts" is directed by Steven Caple Jr., and stars Anthony Ramos, Dominique Fishback, Luna Lauren Vélez, and Tobe Nwigwe as the human characters who discover the transformer robots on an archaeological excavation. This film also features a star-studded voice cast for the various Transformers both good and evil including Peter Cullen as Optimus Prime, Pete Davidson as Mirage, Sebastian Maniscalco as Wheeljack, Ron Perlman as Optimus Primal, and Michelle Yeoh as Airazor. "Transformers: Rise of the Beasts" is directly inspired by the "Beast Wars" era of the original toy line (and tie-in animated show) which establishes the existence of robots that transform themselves into the image of animals rather than cars.

The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes

It's been nearly six years since the last entry in the massive "Hunger Games" franchise with 2015's "The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2," which concluded the story of Katniss Everdeen (played by Jennifer Lawrence) and her climactic struggle against the oppressive government of the Capitol. Although this was a satisfying end to the series for many fans, it should come as no surprise that producers at Lionsgate wanted to bring the franchise back to life with some kind of prequel since these movies made huge amounts of money at the box office. Well, that's exactly what's happening with 2023's "The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes."

"The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes" is a prequel film directed by Francis Lawrence and based on a 2020 novel by original author Suzanne Collins. It takes place nearly 64 years before the events of the original "The Hunger Games" film by focusing on the early years of the Hunger Games event. Tom Blyth stars in the leading role of Coriolanus Snow, who serves as a mentor for tributes in the 10th Hunger Games while also being an ancestor of the evil President Snow of the main series. Other talented performers to appear in this prequel are Rachel Zegler as Lucy Gray Baird, Jason Schwartzman as Lucretius Flickerman, Peter Dinklage as Casca Highbottom, Viola Davis as Dr. Volumnia Gaul, and Hunter Schafer as Tigris Snow.

Elemental

Another year, another highly anticipated Pixar movie. The legendary computer animation studio is back at it in 2023 with a movie that's been shrouded in more mystery than their usual projects but has finally shown more info about "Elemental" through a recent trailer that got audiences excited for what's to come. It's no secret that Pixar loves taking abstract ideas or concepts and anthropomorphizing them, as they did with emotions in "Inside Out" and souls in "Soul," so it seems as though "Elemental" is continuing that trend by portraying various natural elements as people.

"Elemental" takes place in Elemental City, a metropolis where all the elements of the world live together in harmony as conscious beings. It will feature groups of little elementals based on fire, water, and land as they interact in an urban environment (similar to Disney's 2016 film "Zootopia," but with elements instead of animals). The story itself will focus on two elements named Ember (a fire woman) and Wade (a water man) as they become unlikely friends despite their natural differences. Its official synopsis from Pixar itself goes into more detail about its on-screen dynamic. The description explains, "The story introduces Ember, a tough, quick-witted and fiery young woman, whose friendship with a fun, sappy, go-with-the-flow guy named Wade challenges her beliefs about the world they live in." "Elemental" is directed by Peter Sohn and stars the voice acting talent of Mamoudou Athie and Leah Lewis as Wade and Ember respectively.

Star Wars: Rogue Squadron

By far the most tight-lipped movie on our list is Disney's upcoming addition to the never-ending "Star Wars" franchise, "Star Wars: Rogue Squadron." There's so little out there about this film that some fans are unsure if it even is coming out at all, but it seems as though it is actually a real movie currently in production that could still be directed by Patty Jenkins (despite her being removed from the movie on some sites). But don't get your hopes too high since this movie was recently pulled from Disney's release schedule as recently as October of 2022. Regardless, it's still worth talking about just in case it still hits its original launch window of Christmas of next year.

"Star Wars: Rogue Squadron" is a standalone entry into the "Star Wars" canon that focuses on the much loved but often overlooked fighter pilots of the Rebel Alliance. On the official franchise site, the story is described as featuring "a new generation of starfighter pilots as they earn their wings and risk their lives in a boundary-pushing, high-speed thrill ride." True fans of the series will also know that there's an extremely popular series of arcade games titled "Star Wars: Rogue Squadron," which allowed players to take on the role of a pilot themselves and may very well have an influence on the film of the same name. With all the development problems surrounding this flick, it's uncertain if it will actually be a 2023 release after all, but based on how exciting of a premise it is we can only hope they pull this one off.

Meg 2: The Trench

As if "The Meg" wasn't big enough, it's gonna get even bigger with "Meg 2: The Trench." This sequel follows up on 2018's over-the-top sci-fi action story about a 75-foot ancient megalodon hunting a group of scientists out in the Pacific Ocean. This sequel continues the story of rescue diver Jonas Taylor (played by Jason Statham) as he must once again deal with this pesky megalodon at even lower depths than before. While there's little information out there about the plot of "Meg 2: The Trench," it's safe to assume that the plot involves both another megalodon and possibly even a trench.

"The Meg" was a surprise box office hit back in 2018, making over $500 million worldwide off of a budget of only $130 million despite a generally negative critical reception. The first film only managed to snag a 46% score on Rotten Tomatoes from critics and an even lower 42% score from audiences, and yet somehow it did well enough to warrant a sequel in the first place. Regarding the choice to make another "The Meg," Jason Statham himself explained the reasoning during an interview with Entertainment Weekly during the first movie's press tour, saying, "I think it's like anything in this day and age — if it makes money, there's obviously an appetite to make more money. And if it doesn't do well, they'll soon sweep it under the carpet — but that's the way Hollywood works."

Blue Beetle

Yet another superhero movie on this list is DC's upcoming "Blue Beetle" movie, which will bring the iconic techy character to the big screen for the first time. For those who don't know a lot about the character, here's a quick crash course on everything you'll need to know. Blue Beetle is a superhero (whose real name is Jaime Reyes) who gains powers after a blue alien scarab attaches itself to his spine. Because of this event, he is able to form a protective exoskeleton around his body at will which easily allows him to fight crime. Basically, he's DC's answer to Spiderman.

"Blue Beetle" is being directed by Angel Manuel Soto and features a mainly Latino cast of actors such as Xolo Maridueña, Bruna Marquezine, George Lopez, Belissa Escobedo, Adriana Barraza, and Damián Alcázar to name a few. In fact, this is apparently the first film within the DC Extended Universe to have a Latino lead character at all, which is a big milestone for the franchise. In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Xolo Maridueña discussed how essential the Latino background of the character and his family was to the history of "Blue Beetle," saying, "with this character, he lives with his family and there's no way to hide who he is. Right from the very first moment he gets his powers, his family knows. That's different."

Kraven the Hunter

Would it surprise you to learn that even more superhero movies are coming out in 2023? Of course not, there are so many of them that it would be bizarre if there weren't at least four per year to watch. That being said, the upcoming "Kraven the Hunter" adaptation differs in many ways from the other sci-fi superhero flicks on this list.

"Kraven the Hunter" is directed by J. C. Chandor, and it is actually a collaboration between Columbia Pictures, Sony, and Marvel to continue Sony's separate cinematic universe of movies like "The Amazing Spider-Man," "Venom," and "Morbius." It will star Aaron Taylor-Johnson as the larger-than-life character of Kraven the Hunter, a dastardly big game hunter who often has been a dangerous enemy for Spiderman throughout the comics. During an interview with Comicbook.com, Johnson went into detail about what kind of man Kraven will be in his solo film, explaining, "This is a character that was built ages ago and it's in a new time and era, but yeah, is he going to be the hunter that we all want to see? Yeah, absolutely."