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Summer 2020 Movie Preview: Films You Won't Want to Miss

In the strangest summer ever, here's what's coming and where to find them

Russell Crowe in Unhinged LinbManuel Miranda in Hamilton and Will Ferrell and Rachel McAdams in Eurovision Song Contest The Story of Fire Saga

Skip Bolden/Solstice Studios; Theo Wargo/Getty Images for Tony Awards Productions; Netflix

En español | Yes, there will be a movie season this summer (drive-in theaters are even opening back up), but some of the hits will be on streaming services instead of — or also in — movie theaters. Here's the best of what's coming up — but check this page for updates, as COVID-19 may rejigger studios’ best-laid plans to make your summer cinematic.

Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga (Netflix, June 26)

COVID-19 cancelled Europe's huge music event this year, but wouldn't you rather watch this comedy about it by the director of Wedding Crashers, starring Will Ferrell and Rachel McAdams as contestants? Also in the mix: Pierce Brosnan and Demi Lovato.


Lin-Manuel Miranda and the cast of Hamilton perform at the 70th Annual Tony Awards

Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for Tony Awards Productions

Hamilton (Disney+, July 3)

Can't afford an $850 ticket to the insanely popular hip-hop musical about one of our famed Founding Fathers? Celebrate the nation's birthday by enjoying Lin-Manuel Miranda and the original Broadway cast in a filmed stage production with Daveed Diggs as Lafayette and Jefferson.

The Truth (Scheduled for theatrical release July 3)

French screen goddess Catherine Deneuve, 76, has a big comeback role as a movie star whose memoir upsets her daughter (Juliette Binoche, 56) and son-in-law (Ethan Hawke), who return from New York to Paris for a feud-filled reunion. All three stars and director Hirokazu Kore-eda have Oscar honors, and art-film fans are eager to see this.

The Outpost (Scheduled for theatrical release July 3)

Rod Lurie, the only A-list director who attended West Point, adapts Jake Tapper's best seller The Outpost: An Untold Story of American Valor, about the heroes of Afghanistan's bloodiest battle (played by Clint Eastwood's son Scott, Mel Gibson's son Milo, Orlando Bloom and Specialist Ty Carter, an actual veteran of the battle).

Radioactive (Netflix, July 24)

Rosamund Pike (Gone Girl) plays the double-Nobel-prize-winning scientist Marie Curie, who was poisoned by her world-changing X-ray discoveries.

Unhinged (Scheduled for theatrical release July 31)

The first major theatrical release of the summer is a psychological thriller about the world's worst case of road rage, with Russell Crowe as the unwise driver driven to extremes by a fellow motorist.


The One and Only Ivan (Scheduled for theatrical release Aug. 14)

A live action/CG/animated fantasy based on the popular children's book of the same name is about a gorilla, a dog, an adult and a baby elephant living in a mall. The amazing cast includes Danny DeVito, Helen Mirren, Bryan Cranston, Angelina Jolie and Sam Rockwell.

The Secret Garden (Scheduled for theatrical release Aug. 14)

Colin Firth and Julie Walters star in the adaptation of the beloved 1911 novel about an orphan girl who sleuths out family secrets. But wasn't Firth also in the previous, 1987 Hallmark Hall of Fame version of the story? Yes!

Bill & Ted Face the Music (Scheduled for theatrical release Aug. 28)

Keanu Reeves and Alex Winter return in the third episode of their time-tripping fantasy comedy. The music they face this time is aging, but with help from Holland Taylor in what used to be George Carlin's mentor role, they'll write a song to save the universe.

Editor's note: This article was originally published on May 28, 2020. It has been updated with the latest theatrical release dates.