‘Dr. Dolittle’ and 5 Other Books Getting the Star-Studded Movie Treatment in 2020

Dolittle — based on The Voyage of Doctor Dolittle by Hugh Lofting — is set to premiere January 17, 2020. The story will trace Dolittle and his motley crew of animals misfits as they embark on an epic adventure to a mysterious island, hoping to find a cure for Queen Victoria who has fallen gravely ill. The movie will feature Robert Downey Jr. in the title role with several A-listers voicing his furry friends, including Tom Holland, Octavia Spencer, Emma Thompson, Selena Gomez, Ralph Fiennes, and more. 

Robert Downey Jr. of Dolittle
Robert Downey Jr. arrives | Ian Gavan/Getty Images

While this is one book to make sure you read before watching the movie, there are several other books receiving movie treatment in 2020, with A-listers set to take on the title roles. Let’s dive in. 

5. ‘Enola Holmes’

Enola Holmes will premiere in 2020, yet an exact date has yet to be announced. The story will follow Sherlock Holmes’ younger sister. As for the source material, we can thank Nancy Springer’s children’s mystery series. Now, let’s get to the impressive cast; Stranger Things star Millie Bobby Brown will play Enola, while Henry Cavill is set to portray Sherlock Homles. Will Cavill be able to rival Downey’s critically acclaimed and beloved turn as the iconic detective? He’s not the center of attention, but comparisons are sure to sprout up. 

4. ‘The Call of the Wild’

The Call of the Wild is one of those classic novels that many students are forced to read in middle school and, let’s just say, if that’s the last time you read the story, it’s worth a second read as an adult. 

A short adventure novel by Jack London, The Call of the Wild follows Buck (a dog) who is stolen and sold to freight haulers in the Yukon during the Alaska Gold Rush. The CGI-adaptation will star Harrison Gord, Karen Gillan (Avengers: Endgame), and Dan Stevens (Beauty and the Beast). 

3. ‘Artemis Fowl’ 

Artemis Fowl will hit theaters in May 2020 with an all-star cast including Judi Dench, Josh Gad, Nonso Anozie, and newcomer Ferdia Shaw. Shaw will be in a title role surrounded by actors more than capable of showing him the ropes. 

The movie is based on Eoin Colfer’s sci-fi series of the same name and follows the adventures of a young criminal master-mind after he kidnaps a fairy for a large ransom. And, if that sounds crazy, the fantasy only grows ten-fold from that starting point. The series is eight books long, so the movie will likely only cover one or two books. 

2. ‘Greyhound’ / ‘A Good Shepherd’ 

Greyhound is set to premiere in May of 2020 and will be an adaptation of C.S. Forester’s novel The Good Shepherd (note: this is not the same story as the 2006 movie starring Matt Damon). The movie will follow a Naval Officer commanding a convoy of allied ships in WWII with Nazi U-boats close behind, as the bibliofile.com explains. As for the actor behind the naval officer: Tom Hanks.

1. ‘The Witches’

The Witches will be a remake of the 1990 film starring Anjelica Houston, based on the classic novel by Ronald Dahl. The novel follows a boy and his grandmother who live in a world where secret societies of children-hating witches lurk abound. As for the cast, the movie will put Octavia Spencer, Anne Hathaway, and Stanley Tucci all on one screen!