As the awards season slowly comes to an end, we can finally stop looking back on 2012 and start looking forward to what’s to come in 2013. We’ll see the surprising return of old characters (the cast of Anchorman 2), and people we thought we’d never see again (the Bluths). We’ll be inundated with superheroes, and get sequels to last year’s blockbusters (The Hunger Games: Catching Fire and The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug). Here, a look at all the TV shows, movies, and books we’ll be talking about this time next year.
In TV …
The Following, Fox (January 21st)
Kevin Bacon stars as an FBI agent who must come out of retirement to catch an escaped serial killer he put away. If the succeeding episodes can maintain the brutal intensity of the pilot, this is a series recording to add to your DVR. And watched during the daylight.
Bates Motel, A&E (March 18th)
Long before Marion showed up, there was just Norman. And his mother. In A&E’s new series, we’ll see how Norman (Freddie Highmore, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory) became the psycho that he was. Also starring Vera Farmiga (Up in the Air) as Norma Bates.
Behind the Candelabra, HBO (Spring)
Michael Douglas plays Liberace in a movie that director Steven Soderbergh said was “too gay” for movie studios to make. Instead, the biopic and definite awards fodder — also staring Matt Damon as Liberace’s lover — will bring big numbers for HBO.
Arrested Development, Netflix (May)
The banana stand. Never nude. Blue Man Group. Egg. Franklin. Lucille 2. We’ve missed you Bluths.
In Books …
Let’s Explore Diabetes with Owls, David Sedaris (April 23rd)
It has been four long years since Sedaris — the New York Times bestselling author of Me Talk Pretty One Day and Naked — released his last book of essays, When You are Engulfed in Flames. For those who read his short stories or attend his readings again and again (and again), April cannot come fast enough.
And the Mountain Echoed, Khaled Hosseini (May 21st)
After the runaway success of The Kite Runner and A Thousand Splendid Suns, Hosseini’s newest focuses on family relationships and is sure to be another blockbuster.
Doctor Sleep, Stephen King (September 24th)
Haunted by the memory of his father and the Overlook Hotel, the adult Dan Torrance must save a young girl who also has “the shining.” It’s unbelievably risky for King to write a sequel to one of the all time greatest horror novels, but regardless, it’ll be a hell of a lot of fun.
Inferno, Dan Brown (May 14th)
I don’t want to ruin the ending, but Dan Brown’s new mega-colossal-bestseller will involve Tom Hanks using an ancient map painted on a feather to beat Nicolas Cage in finding Dante’s distant cousin, Dantay.
In Movies …
The Great Gatsby (May 10th)
Baz Luhrman’s adaptation was supposed to have been released on Christmas 2012, but the studio bumped it to try and attract a larger audience. (Not sure an opening sandwiched between Iron Man 3, Star Trek 2, and The Hangover 3 is the best idea, though.) Regardless, the trailer—with fast editing and sumptuous images all set to Jay Z and Kanye West’s “No Church in the Wild”—ensures that this 3-D take on Fitzgerald’s classic will be anything but conventional.
World War Z (June 21th)
Like Life of Pi, Max Brooks’ World War Z seemed unfilmable. But unlike Life of Pi, there is no tiger, hyena, zebra, or orangutan. There’s just Brad Pitt and zombies. Lots and lots of zombies.
Kick-Ass 2 (June 28th)
Yes, Iron Man 3, Thor 2, and Zack Snyder’s Superman-reboot Man of Steel will all be released in 2013 (not to mention Hugh Jackman in The Wolverine), but it is the sequel to 2010’s Kick-Ass that has me the most excited. Jim Carrey and John Leguizamo join Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Chloe Grace Moretz, and Christopher Mintz-Plasse as they reprise their roles in this sure-to-be bloody, violent, hilarious film.
Pacific Rim (July 12th) and Elysium (August 9th)
Guillermo del Toro (Pan’s Labyrinth, Hellboy) brings us giant robots fighting giant sea monsters in Pacific Rim. Neil Blomkamp (District 9) brings us a future where people of ravaged Earth fight to get aboard a space station for the wealthy. Awesome.
Star Trek Into Darkness (May 17th)
Besides The Dark Knight, 2009’s Star Trek is one of the best reboots we’ve seen in years. With an impeccable cast (Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Simon Pegg, Zoe Saldana, and Anton Yelchin) and a strong vision from J.J. Abrams, this sequel—also starring the awesome Benedict Cumberbatch—is one of the most anticipated releases of the year. (But let’s hope there’s a lot less lens flare this time around.)