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Oscar Winners 2021: What’s Coming Next

by Yasmine Kandil
Oscar Winners Chloé Zhao and Frances McDormand on the set of the 2021 Best Picture Winner Nomadland.

The 2021 Academy Awards saw an unparalleled pool of filmmakers and performers reach prestigious Oscar gold. Many milestones were finally reached with these Oscar winners: Chloé Zhao became the second woman (and first of color) to ever win Best Director; Mia Neal and Jamika Wilson are now the first black-lead team to win Best Makeup and Hairstyling; Emerald Fennell is the first woman in 13 years to win Best Original Screenplay; last but not least, Minari‘s Youn Yuh-jung became the first Korean to win in any of the acting categories (following Best Picture winner Parasite getting no recognition for its cast last year).

This latest batch of Oscar winners have exciting slates of work on the horizon, including projects from some of the most dominant studios of the moment like Marvel and A24. With so many exciting titles to look forward to, we compiled a handy list of each winner’s upcoming projects, featuring what we know so far and when they are set to be released. Take a look at what we can expect to see from these incredibly talented individuals in the near future.

Chloé Zhao (Best Director)

As many might know, Chloé Zhao has written and directed Marvel Studios’ highly anticipated adaptation of Jack Kirby’s Eternals, starring Angelina Jolie, Kit Harington, Richard Madden, Kumail Nanjiani, Gemma Chan, Lauren Ridloff, Salma Hayek, Ma Dong-seok, Brian Tyree Henry, Lia McHugh and Barry Keoghan.

Eternals follows a race of immortal beings who have lived on Earth and shaped its civilizations for thousands of years. Read why its one of the most important films in Marvel Cinematic Universe history.

Release date: November 5, 2021 in theaters

Additionally, Zhao is set to write and direct a new take on Dracula for Universal Pictures. Her interpretation is described as an “original, futuristic, sci-fi Western with themes of being on society’s fringes.”

“I’ve always been fascinated by vampires and the concept of the Other they embody. I’m very excited to work with [the team] at Universal to reimagine such a beloved character” Zhao tells THR on starting work on the upcoming feature film.

Release date: TBD

Frances McDormand (Best Actress)

The Tragedy of Macbeth
Frances McDormand will star as Lady Macbeth in The Tragedy of Macbeth for A24 and director Joel Coen. She is joined by Denzel Washington as Macbeth, in addition to an impressive supporting cast with the likes of Brendan Gleeson, Corey Hawkins, Ralph Ineson, Harry Melling, and Alex Hassell.

Many suggest that the film will be in black-and-white with McDormand describing her upcoming interpretation of the character with Denzel Washington to The Film Stage as “postmenopausal, we’re past childbearing age. So that puts a pressure on their ambition to have the crown. I think the most important distinction is that it is their last chance for glory.”

Release date: TBD, but seems to be suggested that it will be in the later half of 2021

Women Talking
McDormand is also returning to producing with the upcoming feature Women Talking, adapted from Mariam Towes’ 2018 novel, which she will also be starring in. The story follows a group of women in an isolated religious colony in Bolivia as they struggle to reconcile their faith after several cases of sexual abuse.

Release date: TBD

Anthony Hopkins (Best Actor)

Best Actor Oscar Winner Anthony Hopkins with Olivia Colman as seen in The Father.
Anthony Hopkins & Olivia Colman in ‘The Father’ courtesy of Sony Picture Classics

The Virtuoso
Anthony Hopkins does not waste any time as his next feature releases just 5 days after his Best Actor win, his second Oscar after his iconic 1991 performance as Hannibal Lecter. The Virtuoso is a mystery-thriller in which Hopkins stars alongside Anson Mount and Abbie Cornish. Set in a small sleepy town, chaos is unleashed when a professional assassin accepts a new assignment.

Release date: April 30, 2021 in theaters and VOD

Where Are You
Hopkins is expected to reunite with Westworld co-star Angela Sarafyan in the recently announced indie drama Where Are You. The film reportedly tells the story of a photographer who becomes aggressive when navigating through an artistic decline.

Release date: TBD

Daniel Kaluuya (Best Supporting Actor)

The Upper World
Author Femi Fadugba is expected to release his novel The Upper World in August of this year. Before its release, the book has already been picked up by Netflix for a feature film adaptation, starring Kaluuya as the central character Esso.

The story follows Esso caught in a deadly feud and on the verge of expulsion when he realizes that he has an unexpected gift: access to a world where he can see glimpses of the past and the future.

Release date: TBD

Untitled Jordan Peele Project
Many remember Kaluuya shooting to stardom after starring in Jordan Peele’s 2017 directorial debut, Get Out. The duo is now set to reunite with Peele’s next feature for Universal. The plot details remain a secret, however, we do know that Kaluuya will be joined by Steven Yeun and Keke Palmer who is rumored to be playing his sister.

Release date: July 22, 2022

Youn Yuh-jung (Best Supporting Actress)

Best Supporting Actress Oscar Winner Youn Yuh-jung with Alan Kim in Minari.
Alan Kim & Youn Yuh-jung in ‘Minari’ courtesy of A24

Heaven: To the Land of Happiness
Next up for Youn Yuh-jung is a South Korean film from director Im Sang-soo titled Heaven, which was selected for the 2020 Cannes Film Festival. The story is heavily inspired by the 1997 German film Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door and completed shooting back in October of 2019. It is currently awaiting release in America.

Release date: TBD

The Apple TV+ series Pachinko is based on author Min Jin Lee’s 2017 novel of the same name. The show is thought to have wrapped in early April of this year after shooing in both South Korea and Canada. Yuh-jung stars as the main character Sunja, a member of a Korean family that immigrates to Japan in the early 20th century.

Release date: TBD, but could be expected in late 2021

Florian Zeller (Best Adapted Screenplay)

The Son
Not many know that Florian Zeller’s play The Father derives from a trilogy consisting of two more plays titled, you guessed it, The Mother and The Son. Next up on Zeller’s itinerary is an adaptation of The Son, which already has Hugh Jackman and Laura Dern attached. Zeller winning the Oscar for adapting The Father is already a sign for more success.

Similar to his critically acclaimed directorial debut, the story of The Son is centered around a teenager struggling with depression as a result of his parent’s divorce.

Release date: TBD

Emerald Fennell (Best Original Screenplay)

Best Original Screenplay Oscar Winner Emerald Fennell on the set of Promising Young Woman with Carey Mulligan in costume.
Carey Mulligan & Emerald Fennell on the set of ‘Promising Young Woman’ courtesy of Focus Features/Merie Weismiller Wallace 

Emerald Fennell’s next move is in the superhero genre. The Promising Young Woman writer and director is set to pen an adaptation of Zantanna for DC. The film is in the very early stages and does not yet have a director attached. If all goes through, this will be the character’s debut on the big screen. Zantanna marks the second female lead DC franchise, only proceeded by Wonder Woman.

Release date: TBD

Aside from film, Fennel is diving into theatre. Ahead of London’s theatre district The West End reopening, Fennell is in the middle of rehearsals for a retelling of Cinderella, which she wrote. Featuring music from Phantom of the Opera and Cat’s Andrew Lloyd Webber, the musical stars beloved theatre actress Carrie Hope Fletcher.

Premiering: The show is hitting the stage July 14, 2021

Thomas Vinterberg (Best International Feature)

Families Like Ours
Thomas Vinterberg’s new Danish TV series Families Like Ours has begun development. He will serve as director and co-writer on all six episodes of the show. Set in the near future, a summer is disrupted by a catastrophic flood, causing the residents of Denmark to quickly evacuate and leave their old lives behind. Casting has yet to be announced.

Release date: TBD

Pete Docter and Kemp Powers (Best Animated Feature)

Pete Docter & Kemp Powers behind the scenes of ‘Soul’ courtesy of Pixar/Deborah Coleman

Pete Docter will continue to uphold his responsibility as Chief Creative Officer of Pixar. He has an executive producer credit on their upcoming summer feature Luca, a coming-of-age story set in an Italian seaside town with Jacob Tremblay and Jack Dylan Grazer lending their voices to the lead characters.

Release date: June 18, 2021 in theaters and on Disney+

Turning Red & Lightyear
Back in December of 2020, Docter announced Pixar’s upcoming slate, boasting a whole bunch of new original content coming to cinemas and Disney+ over the next few years. Alongside Luca, Docter has also received executive producer credits on the upcoming features Turning Red and the return of everyone’s favorite space ranger in Lightyear, which will see Chris Evans voice the titular role.

Release date: March and June 2022 respectively

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse 2
Despite Kemp Powers not actually receiving an Oscar for Soul, as the co-Director and writer, he deserves just as much credit for the success of Pixar’s latest win. Powers will be serving as a co-director on the highly anticipated sequel to the critically acclaimed Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse, which took the award for Best Animated feature during the 2019 Oscars ceremony.

Release date: October 7, 2022

Erik Messerschmidt (Best Cinematography)

Best Cinematography Oscar Winner Erik Messerschmidt on the set of David Fincher's Mank.
Erik Messerschmidt on the set of ‘Mank’ courtesy of Netflix

Erik Messerschmidt will next be serving as cinematographer on the American war drama Devotion. Directed by J.D. Dillard, known from cult hits Sleight and Sweetheart, the film will be Joe Jonas’ next venture into acting. Taking place throughout the Korean War, a pair of fighter pilots risk their lives and become some of the Navy’s most celebrated wingmen in history.

Release date: TBD

Raised by Wolves Season 2
The initial season of the HBO Max original series Rasied by Wolves debuted on the streamer last September. In March of 2021, the second season began filming. With showrunner Aaron Guzikowski returning, it is expected that Messerschmidt will be serving as cinematographer once again.

Release date: TBD, expected in the first half of 2022

Scott Fisher (Best Visual Effects)

Top Gun: Maverick
Following Tenet, Scott Fisher has served as special effects supervisor on the upcoming blockbuster Top Gun: Maverick. The film has been delayed several times due to the pandemic, but will see Tom Cruise return as his iconic character from the 1986 classic.

Release date: November 19, 2021

The Tragedy of Macbeth
As discussed earlier in the list, Frances McDormand will star as Lady Macbeth opposite Denzel Washington in the titular role. Joel Coen’s Shakespearean adaptation concluded filming last summer and Fisher will be serving as special effects supervisor in the post-production process.

Release date: TBD

The Book of Boba Fett
As revealed by a post-credits scene on The Mandalorian last year, a new Star Wars spin-off titled The Book of Boba Fett is on the war. The show is currently filming with Temuera Morrison returning once again as the iconic Bounty Hunter. The premise of the series remains unclear, but it can be assumed that Fett will be on a quest to seek revenge on those who have wronged him. Fisher will also be serving as special effects supervisor.

Release date: December 2021

Ann Roth (Best Costume Design)

The Humans
After becoming the oldest Oscar winner in history at the age of 89, Ann Roth is now working on A24’s upcoming drama The Humans. The directorial debut of playwright Stephen Karam adapted from his one-act play of the same name, Steven Yeun, Amy Schumer, and Beanie Felstein have been cast. The film follows a New York-based family whose Thanksgiving reunion quickly takes a turn for the worst. Roth will be serving as Costumer Designer.

Release date: TBD

Perhaps one of the most iconic stage musicals of all time, Wicked is being adapted into a feature film by Crazy Rich Asians director Jon M. Chu. The beloved musical is known for its elaborate and vibrant costumes, which will be designed for the screen by Roth herself.

Release date: December 22, 2021

Mia Neal and Jamika Wilson (Best Makeup and Hairstyling)

Best Makeup and Hairstyling Oscar Winner Mia Neal styling Viola Davis on the set of Ma Rainey's Black Bottom.
Mia Neal Styling Viola Davis on the set of ‘Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom’ courtesy of Netflix

The Humans
Similarly to her Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom collaborator and fellow Oscar winner Ann Roth, Mia Neal will be serving as the Head of the Hair Department on A24’s The Humans.

Release date: TBD.

The First Lady
Jamika Wilson will be reuniting with the one and only Viola Davis for the upcoming Showtime series The First Lady. The anthology program will peel back the curtain on the familial lives the White House has seen across time. As the title suggests, the First Lady will be the focus and will see Davis as Michelle Obama, Gillian Anderson as Eleanor Roosevelt, and Michelle Pfeiffer as Betty Ford. Wilson will bring her A-game as a hairstylist on the show.

Release date: TBD

Jan Pascale (Best Production Design)

Top Gun: Maverick
Following her Oscar win for David Fincher’s Mank, we will be seeing more of Jan Pascale’s work in Top Gun: Maverick. She joins Scott Fisher, but in her signature field of Production Design.

Release date: November 19, 2021.

The Final Award Winners of 2021:

Follow writer Yasmine Kandil on Twitter: @byebyebucky

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