Look for My Bloody Valentine 3-D, with Jensen Ackles, to be a trendsetter.
More movies in 3-?D
Having proved itself profitable with Journey To The Center Of The Earth and that Hannah Montana movie, 3-?D's coming on full-?force this year: My Bloody Valentine 3-D opens later this month, DreamWorks Animation has Monsters Vs. Aliens coming in March, and then there's James Cameron's Avatar, a sci-?fi adventure epic that's already got distributors moving away from its December 18 release date.
Taking action to the IMAX
The Dark Knight demonstrated it's not just possible to shoot state-?of-?the-?art action sequences with large-?format equipment; it's awesome. So we're sure to see IMAX used as a selling point in more blockbusters. In conjunction with 3-?D presentations (see above) or in plain ol' flat-?vision, those giant screens are going to be a big part of our movie-going experience.
The megaplex won't be choked with capes the way it was last summer, when a superhero movie was opening every week. But 2009 will have its share of costumed do-?gooders battling for box-?office supremacy. Chief among them is Zack Snyder's Watchmen, set to open in March - if its release isn't derailed by a pending lawsuit.
Vampires will rise once again
If zombies were the defining monster of the last few years, the box-?office success of Twilight will bring vampires back in a big way. By the time New Moon reaches screens in November, expect to see a dozen quickie knock-?offs. Two or three might even be worth your time.
It will be impossible to escape Paul Rudd
The easygoing scene-?stealer from Anchorman and Forgetting Sarah Marshall logged his first writing credit with November's Role Models, a buddy comedy everyone agreed was way better than it had any right to be. This year, he'll be even more affably omnipresent - a voice actor in Monsters Vs. Aliens, co-?starring with Jason Segel in the "bromantic comedy" I Love You, Man and popping up alongside Jack Black, Michael Cera and Olivia Wilde in Harold Ramis's caveman comedy The Year One. All that's left is a role as a Bond villain, really.
Synergy will get us all
If, while suffering through Yes Man, you noticed that Jim Carrey's boss sure did like dressing up as characters from other movies that just happened to be produced by Warner Bros., well, get used to it. We'll be seeing a lot more of it as the studios look for other opportunities to pimp their own products. In context it can be kind of cool, like the Marvel Universe crossover moment in The Incredible Hulk when Robert Downey Jr. shows up as Tony "Iron Man" Stark... but watching Yes Man stop dead so Jim Carrey could watch the first Harry Potter movie was just lame.