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Paramount’s 2024 CinemaCon Presentation Spotlights Gladiator 2, G.I. Joe & Transformers, and R-Rated TMNT Film

By George & Josh Bate

Paramount Pictures came to CinemaCon 2024 swinging with a massive panel full of new footage and surprise announcements. Here’s a full breakdown of Paramount’s CinemaCon 2024 panel…

Gladiator II

“Are you not entertained?” The CinemaCon audience certainly was as Ridley Scott’s Gladiator II was the centerpiece of Paramount’s presentation. The sequel to the acclaimed 2000 film, Gladiator II is fittingly promoted around Caesar’s Palace (where CinemaCon is held) and Paramount’s president of domestic distribution Chris Aronson arrived while being escorted by a legion of Roman soldiers in a Ben-Hur-esque chariot.

Brief clips of Ridley Scott, Paul Mescal, Pedro Pascal, Denzel Washington, and Joseph Quinn were presented to the CinemaCon crowd where the director and actors expressed their excitement at making a follow-up to the beloved Gladiator. Pascal noted that he saw Gladiator twice in theaters when it came out and that the sequel is “greater than anything I could have ever imagined.”

An extended five-minute trailer of Gladiator II was presented to the crowd. Denzel Washington features heavily, with the trailer suggesting he will play a role similar to Oliver Reed’s Antonius Proximo in Gladiator

Stranger Things’ Joseph Quinn plays the villain, a malevolent leader with eerily pale skin. Quinn’s villain seems clearly inspired by Joaquin Phoenix’s Commodus from the original film. 

The trailer, which was set to a remix of Kanye West and Jay-Z’s ‘No Church in the Wild,’ spotlighted Paul Mescal’s Lucius Verus more than anyone. Mescal’s Lucius is involved in a number of colosseum fights in the trailer, including one in which he finds a group of baboons and another in which he takes on a rhino. The trailer also shows naval battles featuring sharks, so there’s a range of animals that feature in the sequel.

Also featuring prominently in the footage was Pedro Pascal. His role remains under wraps, but it appears he will also be an antagonist against Mescal’s Lucius. A colosseum duel between the characters was previewed in the trailer and, if we had to guess, will serve as the film’s climactic fight.

Gladiator II hits theaters November 22, 2024.

Transformers One

An animated Transformers origin story was another highlight of Paramount’s presentation. The film stars Chris Hemsworth as a young Optimus Prime and Brian Tyree Henry as a young Megatron. Transformers One will center on how these two go from brothers-in-arms to sworn enemies.

A trailer for Transformers One was shown, which showcased some pretty stunning animation. Cybertron has never looked better and more alive, while the action is fluid and the tone is light. The animation on the Transformers’ face looks a little undetailed, however, although the film is still several months away from completion and refinements will surely be made.

Following the trailer, Hemsworth and Henry presented a five-minute clip from the film in Dolby 3D. The clip showed young Optimus Prime (aka Orion Pax) and young Megatron (aka D-16) run into Scarlett Johansson’s Elita, before instigating a chase. This chase takes them through the depths of Cybertron before they emerge to the surface. The animation to bring Cybertron to life was jaw-dropping and, fittingly, the characters on screen were also amazed by the visual marvel. The footage concluded with the surface of Cybertron closing in on itself as the characters ran away.

Transformers One hits theaters September 13, 2024

G.I. Joe & Transformers

That wasn’t the only Transformers news as a crossover G.I. Joe and Transformers film was announced at CinemaCon. Other than a logo, nothing was revealed about the film, although our excitement is high for what seems to be a genius move on behalf of the studio.

IF

John Krasinski trades in horror for family with his upcoming film IF. The film follows a young girl named Bea (played by Cailey Fleming), who gains the ability to see people’s imaginary friends (or ‘IFs’). Starring Ryan Reynolds, the film looks decent, although Paramount’s commitment to funding a big-budget original like this.

A brand new trailer for the film was shown, which can be seen below.

Also announced at CinemaCon was an extended first-look deal with John Krasinski at Paramount Pictures.

A Quiet Place: Day One

Krasinski was also virtually present to lead into a discussion of A Quiet Place: Day One. The upcoming prequel to Krasinski’s horror hit stars Lupita Nyong’o and Joseph Quinn and releases this summer.

Nyong’o and Quinn presented new footage from the film, which showed what happens when the Quiet Place monsters arrive in the world’s loudest place – New York City. Almost all of the trailer is action, largely involving Nyong’o and Quinn’s characters effortfully sprinting away from the monsters. The tension and suspense seem fantastic, which is encouraging given how those attributes were what made the first two Quiet Place movies so thrilling.

A Quiet Place: Day One hits theaters June 28, 2024

Aang: The Last Airbender

Three animated movies from the world of Avatar: The Last Airbender are coming soon. The films will be develop from the original creators of the hit animated show. Dave Bautista will voice the villain while Eric Nam, Dionne Quan, Jessica Matten, and Roman Zaragoza also join the voice cast.

Lauren Montgomery, who worked on the original series, is directed the project. Michael DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko, the original series creators, serve as executive producers alongside Eric Coleman. 

Interstellar – 10th Anniversary Re-Release

Fresh off his myriad of Academy Award wins, Christopher Nolan will get to celebrate the 10th anniversary of Interstellar with a theatrical re-release later this year. 

The film will screen in IMAX and other premium formats. A release date was not announced.

Sonic the Hedgehog 3

A preview of Sonic the Hedgehog 3 was shown to the CinemaCon crowd. The clip shows the return of Jim Carrey’s Mr. Robotnik, who returns to action after getting a haircut that returns him to his classic luck. Mr. Robotnik recruits Shadow in the trailer and together they face off against Sonic and Knuckles.

Sonic the Hedgehog 3 hits theaters December 20, 2024.

Smile 2

A first look at Smile 2 was also presented at CinemaCon. The trailer showed Naomi Scott in the lead role, taking over from Sosie Bacon in the original 2022 film. Scott plays a RIhanna-type artist, who begins to witness people around her ominously smiling.

The footage didn’t really much about the plot, although it appears to be quite similar to the first film – a person witnesses a bizarre and traumatic event, which leads them to being cursed. The end of Smile (2022) saw Sosie Bacon’s Rose character pass the curse onto Kyle Gallner’s Joel. Presumably, Joel passes the curse along to someone and it eventually gets transmitted to Naomi Scott.

Smile 2 hits theaters October 18, 2024

The Last Ronin

Walter Hamada will produce an R-Rated, live-action adaptation of The Last Ronin. The Last Ronin is based on an acclaimed comic book miniseries, which follows the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles in an alternative future. The comic shows the last remaining turtle Raphael as she seeks revenge against Shredder for killing his brothers. 

Scary Movie

A reboot of the Scary Movie franchise is in the works at Paramount Pictures.

Star Trek origin story movie

An origin story Star Trek movie will go into production this year. This is somewhat inconsistent with news that Chris Pine and company will return for a fourth Star Trek film to wrap up their time in the series. 

Smurfs

A new Smurfs movie is in development featuring an all-star cast.including Rihanna, Nick Offerman, Natasha Lyonne, JP Karliak, Dan Levy, Amy Sedaris, Nick Kroll, James Corden, Octavia Spencer, Hannah Waddingham, Sandra Oh, Alex Winter, and Billie Lourd.

Paramount chief Brian Robbins called Rihanna “the most legendary Smurfette ever.”

The Running Man

Edgar Wright wlll direct a remake of the Arnold Schwartzenegger action film from the 1980s. Replacing Schwartzenegger is Glen Powell, who was also at CinemaCon to discuss his role in Twisters.

Bee Gees

Following his work on Gladiator II, Ridley Scott will direct a biopic of the Bee Gees.

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