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SNEAKS 2008 : Action

Looking ahead, categorically

Laughs, chills, animation, musicals. There's plenty of action, high adventure, romance. Let the previews begin.

January 13, 2008

Babylon A.D.

Vin Diesel transports a mysterious woman from Eastern Europe around a post-apocalyptic world to New York City. With Michelle Yeoh, Melanie Thierry, Lambert Wilson and Mark Strong. Directed by Mathieu Kassovitz. Screenplay by Kassovitz and Eric Besnard, based on the novel "Babylon Babies" by Maurice G. Dantec. 20th Century Fox, Aug. 29.

The Dark Knight

Christian Bale returns as Batman and his crusade to clean up Gotham City faces a new challenge: the Joker (Heath Ledger). With Aaron Eckhart, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Gary Oldman, Michael Caine and Morgan Freeman. Screenplay by Jonathan Nolan and Christopher Nolan; story by Christopher Nolan and David S. Goyer. Directed by Christopher Nolan. Also opening in IMAX. Warner Bros., July 18.

Death Race

Jason Statham stars in an updated version of the cult classic set in a future in which prison inmates battle with weaponized vehicles in front of bloodthirsty audiences. With Joan Allen, Tyrese Gibson and Ian McShane. Written and directed by Paul W.S. Anderson. Universal Pictures, Sept. 26.

Elite Squad

Lifelong friends work as undercover agents in the drug-ridden slums of mid-'90s Rio de Janeiro. With Wagner Moura, Caio Junqueira and Andre Ramiro. Written by Braulio Mantovani, Jose Padilha and Rodrigo Pimentel. Directed by Padilha. In Portuguese with English subtitles. The Weinstein Co., summer.

Hancock

Will Smith plays a superhero with an image crisis -- he causes as much harm as good. With Charlize Theron and Jason Bateman. Written by Vy Vincent Ngo and Vince Gilligan. Directed by Peter Berg. Columbia Pictures, July 2.

Hellboy II: The Golden Army

The big, bad and red superhero battles a merciless dictator and his band of marauding monsters. With Ron Perlman, Selma Blair and Doug Jones. Written and directed by Guillermo del Toro; story by Del Toro and Mike Mignola, based on the Dark Horse comic by Mignola. Universal Pictures, July 11.

The Incredible Hulk

Edward Norton steps into the role of the green, rage-fueled giant. With Liv Tyler, Tim Roth and William Hurt. Directed by Louis Leterrier. Written by Norton and Zak Penn, based on characters created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby. Universal Pictures, June 13.

Iron Man

Robert Downey Jr. stars as the Marvel superhero -- a billionaire industrialist and genius inventor with a high-tech armor suit. With Terrence Howard, Jeff Bridges, Shaun Toub and Gwyneth Paltrow. Screenplay by Mark Fergus and Hawk Ostby, and Art Marcum and Matt Holloway. Directed by Jon Favreau. Paramount Pictures, May 2.

The 22nd James Bond Adventure

Daniel Craig dons the 007 tux for a second time. Directed by Marc Forster. Screenplay by Neal Purvis & Robert Wade, and Paul Haggis. MGM/Columbia Pictures, Nov. 7.

Killshot

Thomas Jane and Diane Lane play a husband and wife embroiled in a scam with an inept con man and his aging hit man partner. With Mickey Rourke, Johnny Knoxville, Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Rosario Dawson. Written by Hossein Amini, based on Elmore Leonard's crime novel. Directed by John Madden. MGM/the Weinstein Co., April 11

La Linea

Ray Liotta plays an L.A. hit man hired to take down a Tijuana drug kingpin's loose-cannon lieutenant. With Andy Garcia and Esai Morales. Written by R. Ellis Frazier. Directed by James Cotten. Project One Films, fall.

Never Back Down

A teen turns his aggression to mastering mixed martial arts. With Sean Faris, Amber Heard and Djimon Hounsou. Written by Chris Hauty, Robert Munic. Directed by Jeff Wadlow. Summit Entertainment, March 14.

Punisher: War Zone

Ray Stevenson takes over the title role as vigilante Frank Castle squares off against a vengeful mob boss. Directed by Lexi Alexander. Lionsgate, Sept. 12.

Rambo

Sylvester Stallone follows "Rocky Balboa" with a reprise of his other iconic character, writing, directing and starring as the lone-wolf fighting machine, snapping out of his long retirement in the jungles of Thailand to cross into Myanmar and reluctantly attempt a rescue of a group of missionaries. With Julie Benz, Paul Schulze, Matthew Marsden, Graham McTavish, Rey Gallegos and Ken Howard. Lionsgate, Jan. 25.

Redbelt

Circumstances drive a jiujitsu master to enter a prize fight. With Chiwetel Ejiofor, Emily Mortimer, Alice Braga, Tim Allen, Joe Mantegna and David Paymer. Written and directed by David Mamet. Sony Pictures Classics, April 25.

RocknRolla

A crooked land deal engineered by a Russian gangster triggers a free-for-all in London. With Gerard Butler, Thandie Newton, Chris "Ludacris" Bridges, Jeremy Piven and Tom Wilkinson. Written and directed by Guy Ritchie. Warner Bros., Oct. 3.

Speed Racer

Emile Hirsch stars as the fearless driver out to save his family's business from a corrupt corporation. With Christina Ricci, John Goodman, Susan Sarandon and Matthew Fox. Written and directed by Larry and Andy Wachowski. Warner Bros., May 9.

Sukiyaki Western Django

Genre-bending director Takashi Miike injects the spaghetti western with Samurai overtones in this tale of two clans warring over treasure hidden in a mountain village. With Quentin Tarantino and Hideaki Ito. Written byMiike, Masa Nakamura. First Look Studios, August.

Triangle

Three masters of Asian cinema -- Tsui Hark, Ringo Lam, Johnnie To -- team for a crime caper. With Louis Koo, Simon Yam, Sun Hung Lei, Lam Ka Tung, Kelly Lin. Magnet Releasing, TBA.

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