New ‘Star Wars’ tops 2015 most-anticipated movie list: survey| Excited

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J.J. Abrams poses at the party at the California Science Center in Los Angeles, California September 10, 2013.   REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni

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LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – The upcoming installment of the “Star Wars”
franchise tops moviegoers’ lists of most anticipated films of 2015,
ticket seller Fandango said on Tuesday in what Hollywood watchers expect
to be a banner box office year for studios.

“Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens” highlights a year of
big-budget franchise releases that includes runner-up films “Avengers:
Age of Ultron” and “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2.”

Those
films are expected to push challenge 2013’s record year of about $11
billion in U.S. ticket sales. This year so far, films have grossed $9.4
billion domestically, according to boxofficemojo.com.

The new
“Star Wars” film, which will be the first produced by Walt Disney Co, is
set to be released on Dec. 18 and the reboot of George Lucas’ sci-fi
universe will be directed by “Star Trek” filmmaker J.J. Abrams.

“Hunger
Games” star Jennifer Lawrence was the top female actor moviegoers
wanted to see for the second consecutive year, according to Fandango’s
survey of than 1,000 people.

The final installment of Lions
Gate’s young-adult thriller is scheduled to be released on Nov. 20,
2015. This year’s installment has so far grossed $306.7 million five
weeks into its run at U.S. theaters, the second-highest in 2014 ticket
sales behind “Guardians of the Galaxy.”

Robert Downey Jr, who
returns as Tony Stark/Iron Man in the follow-up to Disney’s 2012
“Avengers” superhero film, was the top male actor, according to
Fandango.

Other anticipated films include erotic thriller “Fifty
Shades of Grey,” from Universal Pictures’ art house unit Focus Features,
and “Jurassic World,” Universal’s resurrection of the “Jurassic Park”
dinosaur disaster series.

“Fifty Shades” star Jamie Dornan was
picked as the biggest breakout male star, while “Star Wars” actress
Daisy Ridley was the biggest female breakout star.

The top
anticipated family movie was “Minions,” Universal’s next installment in
the animated “Despicable Me” franchise. It was followed by “Cinderella,”
“Inside Out,” “Peanuts” and “Pan.”

(Reporting by Eric Kelsey; editing by Patricia Reaney and Nick Zieminski)

 | Reuters

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