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Steven Spielberg’s New Movie Will Revive A Career-Defining Trend After 10 Years Away & It’s Very Exciting

May 26, 20245 Mins Read


  • Steven Spielberg’s new sci-fi movie will be his first summer blockbuster since 2016.
  • The untitled movie also features UFOs, a favorite topic from the director’s early years.
  • The movie has a chance to reverse a recent negative box office trend for Spielberg movies.

Steven Spielberg‘s new movie will revive a trend from his career after a decade. The iconic director, whose early works include the TV movie thriller Duel and the Goldie Hawn-led The Sugarland Express, is best known for blockbuster releases including the iconic movies Raiders of the Lost Ark (the first of the Indiana Jones movies) and Jurassic Park, as well as tentpoles that balance popular and prestige sensibilities such as Saving Private Ryan and Schindler’s List. Over the course of his career, he has been nominated for 23 Oscars, winning three.

In early 2024, it was announced that a new Steven Spielberg science fiction movie was in development. The as-yet untitled movie has been set for a theatrical release on May 15, 2026. Although details are still being kept tightly under wraps, there are several factors that nevertheless prove that it could be a major return to form for the iconic director.


Steven Spielberg Is Having His Best Decade According to Rotten Tomatoes

Steven Spielberg has a legendary filmography, but his last two movies, The Fabelmans and West Side Story, give him his best Rotten Tomatoes average.

Steven Spielberg’s New Movie Will Be His First Summer Release Since The BFG

Spielberg Is A Pioneer Of The Summer Blockbuster

The BFG with Sophie on his shoulder

One career trend that the movie is resurrecting is the iconic Steven Spielberg summer release date. Early in his career, he was credited with redefining the summer blockbuster multiple times over with titles beginning with his smash hit Jaws, which is frequently cited as the first major example of the phenomenon. However, the most recent Spielberg movie to be released in the summer movie season (between May and July) is 2016’s The BFG, which in turn was his first since 2008’s Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. Below, see the dates of his 10 most recent movies:


Release Date

The Fabelmans

November 11, 2022

West Side Story

December 10, 2021

Ready Player One

March 29, 2018

The Post

December 22, 2017


July 1, 2016

Brige of Spies

October 16, 2015


November 16, 2012

War Horse

December 25, 2011

The Adventures of Tintin

December 21, 2011

Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull

May 20, 2008

Part of the reason that the spread of dates is so distant from summer is the fact that many of Spielberg’s recent titles have fit in more with awards fare than the typical blockbuster tentpole. The Fabelmans, West Side Story, and The Post, for instance, all fit that category and were given holiday season releases closer to the award nomination window at the beginning of the following year. This strategy worked, as the movies earned 16 Oscar nominations between them, but it has nevertheless led to a drought of Spielberg-helmed summer movies.

Steven Spielberg Is Returning To His Roots In Multiple Ways With His Next Movie

The Iconic Director Has Several Blockbuster Trademarks

In addition to bringing back the director’s iconic summer release date, his new movie will connect to iconic titles from his early career in other ways. For one thing, the movie is said to feature a story about UFOs, which will bring back the element at the center of his 1977 Jaws follow-up Close Encounters of the Third Kind. Other iconic Spielberg movies concerning his pet topic of aliens visiting Earth include 1982’s E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, 2005’s War of the Worlds, and 2008’s Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.

While the inclusion of aliens in
Crystal Skull
was controversial,
is the second highest-grossing movie that Spielberg ever directed, behind
Jurassic Park

Another throwback to classic Steven Spielberg titles is the fact that the movie is being classified as an “event film.” Spielberg’s career is littered with event films that were major hits. This includes many of the aforementioned summer blockbusters, but other titles on that roster include The Lost World: Jurassic Park as well as movies that he has produced including Jurassic World and Transformers. With so many ties to previous Spielberg movies, the new sci-fi project could also bring back another major element of his past work.

Steven Spielberg’s Next Movie Could Be His Biggest Success In Years

Spielberg Has Had A Box Office Slump In The 2020s

Tye Sheridan as Wade wearing an OASIS headset in Ready Player One

This new Steven Spielberg movie could also reverse a major box office slump for the acclaimed director. Because theaters keep half of ticket sales, movies typically need to make back at least twice their production budgets in order to turn a profit. The last movie of his to do that was Ready Player One, which ended a successful run in the mid-2010s (though The BFG is an outlier, as it likely didn’t actually earn a profit). Below, see a breakdown of Spielberg’s box office performance in the past decade:



Box Office

The Fabelmans (2022)

$40 million

$45.6 million

West Side Story (2021)

$100 million

$76 million

Ready Player One (2018)

~$175 million

$607.9 million

The Post (2017)

$50 million

$179.8 million

The BFG (2016)

$140 million

$195.2 million

Bridge of Spies (2015)

$40 million

$165.5 million

The fate of these recent Steven Spielberg flops could easily be reversed if his new movie captures the same kind of attention as his previous alien titles. While CrystalSkull wasn’t as well-received as the others, all of them have been massive hits, with the lowest-grossing being Close Encounters of the Third Kind, which still made $340.8 million worldwide without adjusting for inflation. If the new sci-fi movie becomes a hit, it could very well break records and usher in a new era of Spielberg summer blockbusters.

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