It seems like just yesterday that moviegoers were anticipating that faraway promise of the summer 2013 movie season. Now that those releases – including current blockbuster Star Trek Into Darkness – are upon us, the time has already come to look forward to what films lie on the horizon.
The fall movie season, for example, is well-known as prime real estate for hopeful awards contenders. Most major studios even stake out the final quarter of the year early to ensure that their projects are at the forefront of voters' minds as a topical conversation point throughout the entertainment world. As it turns out, two high-profile directors have done just that with their next projects.
According to Box Office Mojo, Paramount plans to release Labor Day – the latest from Juno and Up in the Air director Jason Reitman – in limited release on December 25 before expanding early in 2014, while 20th Century Fox has set Ridley Scott's Biblical epic Exodus for a December 12, 2014 release.
Reitman's last film, Young Adult, starred Charlize Theron and Patrick Wilson. However, despite some strong performances from Theron and comedian/actor Patton Oswalt and strong reviews (see our own Kofi Outlaw's review), the film demonstrated the weakest box office performance of Reitman's directorial career.
Labor Day – based on the Joyce Maynard novel – stars Josh Brolin and Kate Winslet, and Paramount's release strategy indicates that the studio has faith in the finished product. Whether or not the film manages to stand out during the always-crowded awards seasons, however, remains to be seen.
That announced date for Exodus put the film between the release of Peter Jackson's The Hobbit: There and Back Again, the final installment of his Hobbit trilogy, and Brad Bird's Disney sci-fi adventure Tomorrowland starring George Clooney. Dark Knight Rises star Christian Bale was previously mentioned to lead the film as Moses, but the studio has yet to issue an official announcement regarding Bale's involvement.
Warner Bros. is also currently developing a film about Moses entitled Gods and Kings. Steven Spielberg recently dropped out of the project, and rumors have Ang Lee (Life of Pi) taking the director's chair. Hollywood blockbusters with similar story elements often come in pairs, but at this point, Fox clearly has the upper hand, as their release will almost certainly hit theaters first.
For those who may be wondering, there's no update on what the ongoing development of Exodus means for the eventual sequel to Prometheus, but don't expect to see Scott revisit the world of Alien for a while.
Source: Box Office Mojo