Super Bowl LVI promises plenty of drama on the football field, with the Bengals and Rams set to square off in a battle of two franchises desperate to hoist the Lombardi Trophy -- Los Angeles for the first time since 1999, and Cincinnati for the first time ever. But Super Bowl Sunday is also must-see TV for the annual barrage of commercials, including major movie and TV trailers. Which hit movies and shows can you expect to make an appearance during the big game? We're glad you asked.
CBS Sports spoke with Mark Ellis, of Rotten Tomatoes, to forecast the best movie and TV previews of Super Bowl Sunday:
How important is the Super Bowl as a platform for these movies and shows, in reality?
Ellis: I look at the Super Bowl as the pinnacle in terms of melding sports and entertainment. The reason why this game continues to break records in terms of TV audiences is because you have so many different types of people watching for different reasons. In terms of movie trailers, some studios take different approaches -- like Warner Bros famously doesn't advertise that much, and they probably won't have to for The Batman, because everybody knows Batman -- but the Super Bowl is huge for those studios wanting to remind you, "Hey, coming out of a pandemic, this movie is really still coming out!"
Which movie trailers are most anticipated for Super Bowl LVI?
Ellis: I think of something like Top Gun: Maverick, which already got a sneak peek as Tom Cruise introduced the AFC Championship Game. Then you have some more under-the-radar possibilities. Like, a few years ago (in 2018), The Cloverfield Paradox, no one knew that was coming out, and Netflix announced it during the game, and it ended up doing incredible numbers. Stranger Things, when they dropped the trailer for Season 2, there was a huge uptick in Netflix subscriptions.
Which movies are locks, in your opinion, to get previews during the Super Bowl?
Ellis: Jurassic World: Dominion, because it's closing out the trilogy, and the new Minions film, Rise of Gru, coming out July 1. I also expect Disney to have a big presence, because they have Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, and fans got a little tease of that with Spider-Man: No Way Home. Disney/Pixar, they've got Lightyear, the Buzz Lightyear prequel; I expect we'll see that, too. And probably some more content from Moon Knight (the Disney+ series), which already had a "Monday Night Football" tie-in.
How likely is Spider-Man to play a role in the Doctor Strange teaser after No Way Home's record success?
Ellis: I think it would be wise (for Disney) to tie Spider-Man into anything they have coming out, and it would make sense that it carries into that multiverse story. I could see Spider-Man and Doctor Strange being present in that trailer, and maybe another surprise character. Marvel loves surprising fans. (But) I think it's just gonna be one Spider-Man, if we get one.
What are some others that could be teased, perhaps as major surprises?
Ellis: Netflix likes to do some crazy stunts. They've got a movie coming called The Adam Project, about a time-traveling pilot, so we might see Ryan Reynolds before or after the game. We'll probably see The Lost City, which stars Brad Pitt and Sandra Bullock. And Sonic the Hedgehog 2. Peacock could also show a lot of their new series Bel-Air, which is produced by Will Smith. Maybe Warner will actually show The Batman, or we'll get something from Apple TV.
What's the one trailer that'll have everyone buzzing during or after the game?
If it happens, the post-pattern completion would be Nope, Jordan Peele's new movie, which we don't know much about. If Nope does not make an appearance, then I would say Doctor Strange is the safest bet. Jurassic World, I'm sure, is gonna look awesome. But the dino's kind of out of the pen already on that. I think Nope would be the Cincinnati Bengals of the Super Bowl trailer spots, just all of a sudden rolling in with confidence and the play to back it up.