Oscars 2017 Preview: 'Birth of a Nation,' 'Sully' headline potential winners

Emilia Clarke, left, and Nate Parker present the award for best first feature at the Film Independent Spirit Awards on Saturday, Feb. 27, 2016, in Santa Monica, Calif. Turner's film "Birth of a Nation," set to be released later this year, is already garnering acclaim. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)

Now that the films, actors and actresses of last year have earned their awards, it’s time to look forward, into the future, to see what blockbuster films and beautiful faces we can expect to see at the 2017 Academy Awards.

This upcoming year is filled with upcoming movies that will surely make the last Oscars ones to forget.

First on the list is a couple of films from Peter Berg. The director known for the movie “Lone Survivor,” which was nominated for two Oscars previously, is coming out with two movies that are sure to make ripples in the land of Hollywood.

Meanwhile, Berg’s second film of 2016, “Patriots Day,” slated for a January 2017 release, follows the events of the 2013 attacks on Boston. This movie stars Mark Wahlberg and J.K. Simmons, the winner of best supporting actor in 2015 for his performance in “Whiplash.”

Another very highly anticipated film for 2016 is “Sully,” the story of Sully Sullenberger, who miraculously landed a commercial airliner on the Hudson river in 2009, avoiding what could have been a major disaster. Even better, Sullenberger will be played by the legendary Tom Hanks, who has already won two out of five nominations for Best Actor.

If you think that’s all, just remember that it’s being directed by Clint Eastwood, who has already proven his directing talent by winning two director related Oscars for “Unforgiven” and “Million Dollar Baby.” “Sully” will be released in September.

Meanwhile, a film that has already been the center of discussion at the Sundance Film Festival is “Birth of a Nation,” directed by the up-and-coming Nate Parker. Set in 1831, the film follows the courageous former American slave Nat Turner as he attempts to spark a rebellion in the Confederate state of Virgina.

“Birth of a Nation” was recently bought by Fox Searchlight for a whopping $17.5 million and sets to make its debut on the big screens in October.

Martin Scorsese is also set to make yet another push for Oscar glory this year with his upcoming film “Silence.” The master of cinematography has been working on this film since 1991, as it has been a major passion of his to complete. The film follows the journey of two Jesuit preists to Japan in search of their mentor as they are faced with persecution and violence.

Starring an incredible cast including Liam Neeson, Adam Driver and Andrew Garfield, “Silence” will hit theaters sometime later this year.

Fighter movies often do well in the box office, this year “Bleed for This” is no exception. 

The young and talented Miles Teller returns to the Oscar conversation this year in his role as Vinny Pazienza, a Boxer who nearly died in a car accident, leaving him unlikely to ever walk again. Vinny then, defying all odds, makes an unimaginable comeback.

This marks the first big film for director Ben Younger. Rumor has it the film was fought over by several distributors, therefore it must be a contender. “Bleed for This” will be out in theaters this fall.

There we have it, six of the most anticipated films for 2016 and early 2017. We’re only at the beginning of the year, which gives plenty of time for other films to come out of the woodwork in order to qualify for the 2017 Academy Awards.


John Moreno is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus.