Generally, when a movie  ends up having its release date delayed by years, it’s a sign that the studio behind it knows the film is a dud. In the case of The Cabin in the Woods, however, said delay can actually be chalked up to a combination of other factors.

Joss Whedon co-wrote Cabin in the Woods with Drew Goddard (Cloverfield), who also made his directorial debut on the picture. The film was at one point slated to hit theaters in October 2009, then it was delayed in order to be post-converted to 3D – and then it was shelved completely, due to MGM’s bankruptcy issues.

Lionsgate finally stepped in to distribute the horror pic earlier this year, and has now settled on an official release date. Unfortunately, for those who’ve been hyped to see what Whedon has (slyly) described as being “the horror movie to end all horror movies” will have to wait a bit longer – specifically, until April 13th, 2012.

Previous reports suggested that Lionsgate was planning to unveil the film on October 28th this year, but (obviously) the studio eventually decided against that course of action. It’s likely that date was seen as too crowded already, what with Roland Emmerich’s Anonymous, Andrew Niccol’s In Time, and the Johnny Depp-starring Rum Diary all being slated to arrive on that day. Plus, Lionsgate probably liked the idea of releasing Cabin in the Woods on a Friday the 13th, for marketing purposes.

Cabin in the Woods stars Chris Hemsworth (in his pre-Thor days) as a fellow who heads out to a remote spot in the wilderness with some friends – and, in typical horror movie fashion, chaos ensues thereafter. The supporting cast includes the likes of Whedon-verse veterans Amy Acker (Angel) and Fran Kranz (Dollhouse), along with lesser-knowns like Kristen Connolly, Brian J. White, Jesse Williams, and Anna Hutchinson as potentials victims for the unknown monster(s) in the film. Renowned character actors like Richard Jenkins (Let Me In) and Bradley Whitford (The West Wing) round out the cast.

The idea is that Cabin the Woods supposedly subverts horror genre conventions and yet also still works as a legitimately thrilling scarefest, with its tongue planted firmly in cheek. Think of something along the lines of Sam Raimi’s first two Evil Dead movies and Whedon’s Buffy the Vampire Slayer TV series, and you’ll be on the right track. Sound promising?

To reiterate: The Cabin the Woods will arrive in U.S. theaters on April 13th, 2012.

Source: Lionsgate