[Update: The Release dates of both films have been changed. Go HERE for details.]

Two very different projects from the Mouse House – their adaptation of author Edgar Rice Burrough’s John Carter of Mars series and the feature-length treatment of Tim Burton’s Frankenweenie – will arrive in theaters during the first half of 2012.

Frankenweenie will be unleashed (heh) first on March 9th of that year.  Hmmm… a Walt Disney Pictures 3D, family-friendly production that was directed by Tim Burton is being released just two weeks before the official start of spring.  Is the company perhaps hoping to replicate the success of this year’s Alice in Wonderland?

The original Frankenweenie was a low-budget, black & white short Burton created back in 1984 and told the story of a young boy who resurrects his deceased dog Frankenstein style.  It was a fun – albeit mildly warped in that classic Burton style  – little flick that had appeal for both older and younger viewers.

Will that basic premise work as well in a full-length film as it did for one that was 29 minutes long?  I would like to see Burton get back on track after Alice (which I found to be a lackluster effort on his part), though I am not entirely convinced this will be the pic to do that.

Still frame from 'Frankenweenie'

John Carter of Mars is definitely a cinematic adaptation to keep an eye out for.  It is based off some classic sci-fi literature and is being helmed by Pixar maestro Andrew Stanton (Wall-E) – a fellow who certainly knows how to create an engaging adventure on the big screen.

Disney has scheduled John Carter for release on June 8th of 2012, which would be just a week before Pixar’s film Brave is scheduled for release.  It would be an unsual move on the company’s part to release two potential blockbusters so close to one another, so there is a good chance that Pixar’s 3D, computer-animated pic will change its day of release in the near future.

Artwork from 'John Carter of Mars'

Many of the individuals who have been following the development of the John Carter movie will probably be surprised to hear that the 3D matter is currently up in the air.  Disney executives are reportedly interested in a post-production conversion, though Stanton remains unconvinced at this point.  Bit of (ironic) trivia – the original John Carter series was very much an influence on James Cameron’s little pic Avatar.  You might have heard of that 3D sci-fi adventure, yes? ;-)

So which Disney pic are you more excited for – John Carter of Mars?  Frankenweenie?  Both?

Source: Walt Disney Pictures