September 2022: Everything to Watch on Streaming & in Theaters

Viola Davis in The Woman King; Morfydd Clark in The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power; Diego Luna in Andor. Photos Courtesy: Sony Pictures; Amazon Studios; Lucasfilm

We’re officially in the pumpkin-spice-latte days of early fall, when the eagerness to wear a cardigan is high — even if still not advisable — and the number of TV and movie releases is only increasing.

Here, we’ll tell you what’s new on streaming when it comes to film and TV, what shows are returning for new seasons, and what movies you’ll only be able to watch on the big screen — at least for now. If you want even more ideas on what to watch, take a look at our Coming Soon lists for August and July. And don’t forget our roundup of everything the entire fall movie season has in store for us

September has a lot to offer when it comes to films and TV — and, yes, finally that Star Wars show starring Diego Luna and that little Lord of the Rings prequel series on Prime Video are here.

Some of September’s Most Anticipated New Shows

Gavin Drea and Rosa Salazar in Wedding Season. Photo Courtesy: Hulu

The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power (September 2), Prime Video: This prequel show is set thousands of years before the events of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. “Beginning in a time of relative peace, the series follows an ensemble cast of characters, both familiar and new, as they confront the long-feared re-emergence of evil to Middle-earth,” reads Amazon Studio’s official synopsis. Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom’s director J.A. Bayona helms the first two episodes of this ambitious eight-episode first season. You can read our full review of The Rings of Power here

Wedding Season, (September 8), Hulu: Not to be confused with the Netflix rom-com movie of the same name that premiered last month, this is an eight-episode romantic comedy series starring Rosa Salazar as Katie and Gavin Drea as Stefan. They meet at a wedding and have an instant connection. They begin an affair but she already has a fiancé. She marries said fiancé two months later but her new husband and his family are murdered at the wedding. The police suspect Stefan. Stefan thinks it’s Katie who did it. In the end, the two of them end up on the run together, attempting to prove their innocence.

Gutsy (September 9), Apple TV+: This eight-part docu-series follows Hillary Rodham Clinton and Chelsea Clinton as they meet gutsy and pioneering women. Over the course of the show, the Clintons get to spend time with Dr. Jane Goodall, Mariska Hargitay, Goldie Hawn, Kate Hudson, Kim Kardashian, Megan Thee Stallion, Amber Ruffin, Amy Schumer, Gloria Steinem, Wanda Sykes and many other inspiring women.

Sennia Nanua and Samantha Morton in The Serpent Queen. Photo Courtesy: Starz

The Serpent Queen (September 11), Starz: Samantha Morton (Minority Report) plays Catherine de Medici in a show about how she becomes the long-serving monarch in France. Through flashbacks, we witness her younger years — where the character is played by Liv Hill — as she marries into the 16th-century French court and learns to maneuver the power politics against all odds. The eight-episode drama is based on Leonie Frieda’s biography about Catherine de Medici

American Gigolo (September 11), Showtime: This reimagining of the 1980 movie starring Richard Gere is set in the present-day and stars Jon Bernthal as Julian Kaye. Julian is released from prison after 15 years of being wrongfully convicted. Rosie O’Donnell plays Detective Sunday, who’s seeking to uncover the truth behind the death that saw Julian falsely accused. All the while he’s trying to reconcile his present situation with his past as a sex worker.

Andor (September 21), Disney+: If you’ve been digging The Mandalorian and Obi-Wan Kenobi, you’re probably looking forward to Star Wars’ next series. Andor stars Mexican actor Diego Luna, who’s reprising his defining role from Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (2016), playing the rebel spy Cassian Andor. Rogue One’s screenwriter, Tony Gilroy, has also gone back to the galaxy far, far away as the creator and writer of this prequel series. Tony Gilroy’s brother and frequent collaborator, Dan Gilroy (Nightcrawler), and House of Cards creator Beau Willimon also share writing credits, so we’re feeling optimistic about this one.

Reasonable Doubt (September 27), Hulu: This first scripted series from the Onyx Collective — Disney’s content brand envisioned to curate premium entertainment programming by creators of color and underrepresented voices — is directed and executive produced by Kerry Washington. Emayatzy Corinealdi stars in this nine-episode legal drama as Jax Stewart, a Los Angeles defense attorney with questionable ethics and far-fetched interpretations of the law. She “bucks the justice system at every chance she gets,” reads Hulu’s synopsis of the show.

Must-See Returning TV on Streaming

Tyler James, Lisa Ann Walter, William Stanford Davis, Quinta Brunson, Sheryl Lee Ralph, Chris Perfetti and Janelle James in Abbott Elementary. Photo Courtesy: ABC

Rick and Morty, Season 6 (September 4), [adult swim]: The acclaimed Emmy Award-winning animated comedy returns for a sixth season of following the intergalactic escapades of mad scientist Rick Sanchez (voice of Justin Roiland), his daughter Beth (voice of Sarah Chalke), son-in-law Jerry (voice of Chris Parnell), granddaughter Summer (voice of Spencer Grammer) and grandson Morty (voice of Justin Roiland).

Queen Sugar, Season 7 (September 6), OWN: The story of the Bordelon family is coming to an end with the seventh and final season of this Ava DuVernay-created drama for the Oprah Winfrey Network. “To write and produce seven seasons of a modern drama centered on a Black family is a radical act in our industry and a triumph that has far exceeded every hope I held. Now I feel strongly that the story, which began as a sunrise of a suggestion from Oprah, is ready for its sunset as a dream fully realized,” says the Selma director about the show.

Audra McDonald and Christine Baranski in The Good Fight. Photo Courtesy: Paramount+

The Good Fight, Season 6 (September 8), Paramount+: Another show coming to an end, this one in its sixth season, is Robert and Michelle King’s The Good Fight. This spinoff of The Good Wife centers the lawyer Diane Lockhart (Christine Baranski) as she works at a Black law firm. The new episodes will once again comment on the weirdness of our present situation through humor and allegory, and a few too-close-to-reality cases. Audra McDonald, Nyambi Nyambi and Sarah Steele all return. Alan Cumming, Andre Braugher and John Slattery join the ensemble cast this final season. 

Cobra Kai, Season 5 (September 9): “Following the shocking results of the All Valley Tournament, Season 5 finds Terry Silver expanding the Cobra Kai empire and trying to make his ‘No Mercy’ style of karate the only game in town. With Kreese behind bars and Johnny Lawrence setting karate aside to focus on repairing the damage he’s caused, Daniel LaRusso must call on an old friend for help,” reads the Netflix synopsis about this show starring Ralph Macchio and William Zabka, who reprise their roles from the 1984 movie The Karate Kid

The Handmaid’s Tale, Season 5 (September 14), Hulu: While June (Elisabeth Moss) faces the consequences of killing Commander Waterford (Joseph Fiennes) and tries to find her footing in life again, Serena (Yvonne Strahovski) is seeking to raise her profile in Toronto as Gilead is creeping into Canada. This adaptation of Margaret Atwood’s novel of the same name returns for a new season that’s sure to make us reflect on gender roles, reproductive freedom and theocracies.

Atlanta, Season 4 (September 15), FX and Hulu: After season three wrapped up a mere three months ago, now comes the fourth and final season of this musical show created and starring Donald Glover. After a European tour on season three that took the gang to Paris and Amsterdam, Earn (Glover), Alfred ‘Paper Boi’ Miles (Brian Tyree Henry), Darius (LaKeith Stanfield) and Van (Zazie Beetz) are now back in Atlanta. But has their hometown changed while they were away — or have they?

Cassandra Ciangherotti, Ana Fabrega, Julio Torres, Fred Armisen and Bernardo Velasco in Los Espookys. Photo Courtesy: HBO

Los Espookys, Season 2 (September 16), HBO and HBO Max: More fantastic. More mysterious. More espookier than before… promises HBO’s promo for this comedy’s second season. Co-created by Fred Armisen (Portlandia), comedian Ana Fabrega and Saturday Night Live writer Julio Torres — and starring the three of them alongside Cassandra Ciangherotti and Bernardo Velasco— Los Espookys is set in a fictional Latin American country that’s, of course, prone to instances of magical realism. Ciangherotti, Velasco, Torres and Fabrega play a group of friends who love horror and turn their taste for the obscure into a business

Abbott Elementary, Season 2 (September 21), ABC and Hulu: The first season of this Quinta Brunson-created mockumentary comedy has seven Emmy nominations and is one of my favorite series of the year so far. So I’m definitely looking forward to more low-stakes, complicit laughs, feel-good moments and skits with Janine (Brunson) trying to impress her co-workers at the Philadelphia elementary school. 

Van der Valk, Season 2 (September 25), PBS: Fans of police procedurals set in Europe rejoice. Based on the Nicholas Freeling novels, this Amsterdam-set production stars Marc Warren (Band of Brothers) as Commissaris Piet van der Valk. He’s a bit of a loner, he lives on a boat, and his methods aren’t always conventional or proper. Yet he’s a genius when it comes to uncovering criminals. You know the type. 

Movies on Streaming

Regina Hall and Sterling K. Brown in Honk for Jesus. Save Your Soul. Photo Courtesy: Focus Features

Here, we’ve included a selection of films that will debut exclusively on streaming, both on streaming and in theaters simultaneously, as well as movies that first premiered in theaters and are now available digitally. 

Love in the Villa (September 1), Netflix: If you’re feeling like a rom-com movie — and why shouldn’t you? — this could be an option. A teacher and expert planner (Kat Graham) travels to Verona after breaking up with her partner. She wants to finally visit the city of Romeo and Juliet. The thing is though, the villa she reserved was double-booked and she’ll be forced to share it with an annoying — yet quite handsome — Brit (Tom Hopper).

Honk for Jesus. Save Your Soul. (September 2), theaters and Peacock: Writer and director Adamma Ebo adapted this satirical comedy from her own short. Regina Hall (Nine Perfect Strangers) stars as Trinitie Childs, the first lady of a Southern Baptist megachurch. Sterling K. Brown (This Is Us) is Trinitie’s husband, Pastor Lee-Curtis Childs. “After a scandal forces their church to temporarily close, Trinitie and Lee-Curtis must reopen their church and rebuild their congregation to make the biggest comeback that commodified religion has ever seen,” reads Focus Features’ synopsis of the movie. 

Elvis (September 2), HBO Max: Musical heavy-weight Baz Luhrmann (Moulin Rouge) directs and co-writes this biopic starring Austin Butler (The Carrie Diaries) as music legend Elvis Presley. The film also stars Tom Hanks as Presley’s manager, Colonel Tom Parker. The film premiered in theaters in June and is getting its streaming release now.

Pinocchio (September 8), Disney+: This year, we’ll see two new versions of the story of the Italian carpenter Geppetto and his wooden marionette Pinocchio who dreams of being a real boy. And while we wait for Guillermo del Toro’s take on this story, which is set to debut in December, Disney’s live-action version directed by Robert Zemeckis and starring Tom Hanks as Geppetto will be available much sooner. 

End of the Road (September 9), Netflix: TV veteran director Millicent Shelton (P–Valley, Black-ish) directs this road trip movie starring Queen Latifah as Brenda and Chris ‘Ludacris’ Bridges as her brother Reggie. They’re on a cross-country trip with her two kids when they witness a murder and find themselves in the way of a killer. “Now alone in the New Mexico desert and cut off from any help, Brenda is pulled into a deadly fight to keep her family alive,” reads Netflix’s synopsis.

Doris Muñoz and Jacks Haupt in Mija. Photo Courtesy: Disney+

Mija (September 16), Disney+: This documentary follows Doris Muñoz and Jacks Haupt, two daughters of Mexican immigrants trying to make it in the music industry. Isabel Castro directs this story about following your dreams while feeling guilty, pursuing a risky profession and being a pathway for your family to green cards and reunification.

A Jazzman’s Blues, select theaters (September 16) and Netflix (September 23): Written, directed and produced by Tyler Perry, this is the story of star-crossed lovers Bayou (Joshua Boone) and Leanne (Solea Pfeiffer). The film is set in the deep South and spans four decades, from the 1940s to the 1980s. The film will debut at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) this month.

Xavier Samuel, Ana de Armas and Evan Williams in Blonde. Photo Courtesy: Netflix

Blonde, select theaters (September 16) and Netflix (September 28): Writer and director Andrew Dominik (The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford) adapts Joyce Carol Oates’ novel of the same name. Blonde reimagines the life of Marilyn Monroe (Ana de Armas), from her childhood to her accession to Hollywood’s royalty — as well as her romantic life. “Blonde blurs the lines of fact and fiction to explore the widening split between [Monroe’s] public and private selves,” reads Netflix’s synopsis of the film.

Meet Cute (September 21), Peacock: Add another rom-com to your list. Here, Sheila (Kaley Cuoco) and Gary (Pete Davidson) meet and it’s love at first sight. The thing is, their first date wasn’t accidental at all. She has a time machine — and they’ve been falling in love over and over again. 

Sidney (September 23), Apple TV+: Produced by Oprah Winfrey, this documentary centers on the late Sidney Poitier. The film features interviews with Denzel Washington, Halle Berry, Robert Redford, Lenny Kravitz, Barbra Streisand and Spike Lee. “This revealing documentary honors the legendary Sidney Poitier and his legacy as an iconic actor, filmmaker and activist at the center of Hollywood and the Civil Rights Movement,” reads Apple TV+’s synopsis. 

Hocus Pocus 2 (September 30), Disney+: If Los Espookys got you into the Halloween mode, here come a couple more options for lovers of all things wicked. The Proposal’s director Anne Fletcher helms this sequel to the 1993, which starred Bette Middler, Sarah Jessica Parker and Kathy Najimy as the Sanderson sisters — a trio of witches. “It’s been 29 years since someone lit the Black Flame Candle and resurrected the 17th-century sisters, and they are looking for revenge. Now it is up to three high-school students to stop the ravenous witches from wreaking a new kind of havoc on Salem before dawn on All Hallow’s Eve,” reads Disney+’s synopsis of the movie, which sees the three leads reprising their iconic roles.

My Best Friend’s Exorcism (September 30), Prime Video: The title on this one is quite self-explanatory. High school sophomores and best friends Abby (Elsie Fisher) and Gretchen (Amiah Miller) go skinny dipping one evening. Everything changes from that moment onward. Gretchen is different, cranky. Weird things happen when she’s around. Abby’s investigation into what’s going on doesn’t bode well. “Is their friendship powerful enough to beat the devil?” asks Amazon’s synopsis of the movie, which is set in 1988.

And a Few Movies You’ll Only Be Able to Watch in Theaters

Olivia Wilde, Nick Kroll and Chris Pine in Don’t Worry Darling. Photo Courtesy: Warner Bros.

See How They Run (September 16): While we wait for the release of Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery in December, we can sate our thirst for comedic murder mysteries with star-studded casts with this title. Saoirse Ronan, Sam Rockwell, Adrien Brody, David Oyelowo and Ruth Wilson star in this film set in 1950s London. The central mystery revolves around the murder of a Hollywood director. Inspector Stoppard (Rockwell) and the eager — if inexperienced — Constable Stalker (Ronan) are set to investigate the case. What could possibly go wrong?

The Woman King (September 16): Gina Prince-Bythewood (The Old Guard, Love & Basketball) directs Academy Award-winner Viola Davis in this film inspired by true events and set in the 1800s. The movie follows the story of the Agojie, an all-female unit of warriors charged with protecting the African Kingdom of Dahomey. This is another of the titles slated to debut at TIFF this month and there’s already Oscar buzz around it. 

Avatar (September 23): Avatar: The Way of Water, a.k.a. Avatar 2, will finally hit screens this December. But if you too watched Avatar back in 2009 when it first debuted — and when 3D still looked like the future of moviegoing — you may want a refresher. The origin story for this James Cameron franchise will be re-released in theaters for a limited run in anticipation of The Way of Water’s premiere. 

Don’t Worry Darling (September 23): Olivia Wilde’s second feature film as a director after her work in the outstanding Booksmart (2019) stars Florence Pugh and Harry Styles as a married couple living in a utopian experimental community in the 1950s. Pugh plays a housewife and someone who fears that the company her husband works for may be hiding something. The movie also stars Wilde alongside Chris Pine, Gemma Chan and Kiki Layne. Plus, all the drama surrounding the filming of this movie really has us more than intrigued about it. 

Luke Macfarlane and Billy Eichner in Bros. Photo Courtesy: Universal Pictures

Bros (September 30): And let’s wrap things up with yet another rom-com, which will also debut at TIFF. Nicholas Stoller (Neighbors) directs and co-writes and Billy Eichner co-writes and co-stars here alongside co-lead Luke Macfarlane. Eichner plays Bobby, an accomplished podcaster and single gay New Yorker who doesn’t really believe in love. But when he meets the lawyer Aaron (Macfarlane), they start a casual relationship, and things align in a way they both couldn’t have predicted.