Universal has given the remake of Death Race 2000 (now just Death Race) an early green light, moving the September film up in to August. The movie, a Paul WS Anderson reimagining of the Paul Bartel/Roger Corman classic*, has been testing well with preview audiences (damn you, preview audiences), and perhaps Universal is sensing that its summer needs a little bit of boost.

Death Race will be opening August 22nd, and I bet you it wins the weekend, where it’s up against The Accidental Husband, The House Bunny, Wayne Kramer’s Crossing Over and Nic Cage’s latest attempt to make his career an absurdist joke, Bangkok Dangerous.

As terrible as the movie looks to be (instead of a cross country race of massive mayhem, the film is set on a stupid circular track), the cast list is impeccable: Jason Statham, Joan Allen, Tyrese, and Ian McShane. I have a feeling that with this cast I’kll find something to enjoy… which hasn’t happened with me and a Paul WS movie since Mortal Kombat.

*and I don’t say classic lightly here. The film is weirdly timeless, seemingly even more relevant to us today than it was to audiences in 1975.