BREAKING:Since neither Universal Pictures nor Relativity Media are blinking about going ahead with rival Snow White films, it seemed inevitable that Universal would not be content for its film to come out six months later. So the studio has just swapped release dates of Judd Apatow’s next untitled film (which was supposed to come out June 1), and has given that June 1, 2012 date to Snow White and the Huntsman. At present, Relativity Media’s film, The Brothers Grimm: Snow White, is dated for June 29, 2012 with shooting to begin in August. We’ll have to see whether Ryan Kavanaugh’s film division reconsiders. That Tarsem Singh-directed film stars Julia Roberts, Lily Collins, Armie Hammer and Nathan Lane. The lesson of rival films about Truman Capote and In Cold Blood echoes loudly here. Capote came out first, won an Oscar for Philip Seymour Hoffman, and nobody cared when Infamous came out later. Being the second film on the same subject is perilous and when that prospect faced Baz Luhrmann and Dino De Laurentiis on their Alexander the Great movie because Oliver Stone beat them to the start gate, the project was scrapped.
Universal’s decision comes days after the studio finally set Thor star Chris Hemsworth as its Huntsman, which Deadline was the first to reveal would happen. He joins Kristen Stewart, Charlize Theron and Sam Claflin in the Rupert Sanders-directed film. Apatow (who must be strutting after Bridesmaids defied expectations last weekend) will move his film back to December, 2012 on the release calendar.
Considering the slate funding history these two parties have had, they are really going at one another.
Here’s the official announcement:
UNIVERSAL CITY, CA, May 15, 2011 – Universal Pictures announced today that its epic action-adventure Snow White and the Huntsman will make a bold move into the early summer movie season with its new release date of June 1, 2012. The much anticipated film stars Twilight’s Kristen Stewart, Academy Award® winner Charlize Theron, Thor’s Chris Hemsworth and Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides’ Sam Claflin.
This breathtaking new vision of the legendary tale from Joe Roth, the producer of Alice in Wonderland, and acclaimed commercial director and state-of-the-art visualist Rupert Sanders (Halo 3 campaign) had originally been set for release in late December of next year. With adjustments to the production timeline, however, the film will now be ready for a summer 2012 release date.
In Snow White and the Huntsman, Stewart plays the only person in the land fairer than the evil queen (Theron) who is out to destroy her. But what the wicked ruler never imagined is that the one girl threatening her reign has been training in the art of war with a huntsman (Hemsworth) who was dispatched to kill her. Claflin plays the prince long enchanted by Snow White’s beauty and power.
“As Rupert and Joe were finalizing casting and preproduction of Snow White and the Huntsman, we realized that the ambitious and fully-formed world they had promised was blowing away all expectations,” said Universal Chairman Adam Fogelson and Co-Chairman Donna Langley in a joint statement. “We’re thrilled that Universal will be bringing this singular version of a timeless story almost seven months earlier than anticipated.”