Hot on the heels of the debut of that tasty new British art for Che (seen above) we’ve now got release dates, via Jeff Wells, for the films in North America. And…they kinda suck. Che Part One (no longer The Argentine, evidently) will open on New Year’s Day 2009, and Che Part Two (nee Guerilla) will drop six weeks later on February 20, 2009.

Jeff Wells still reports that the full four-hour version won’t be seen in theatres outside of LA and New York City, where they’ll play for an Oscar-qualifying week starting on December 12 of this year. With any luck the film(s) will also bow On Demand, as previously promised, so you might be able to do the full shebang at home.

That’s kind of a kick in the sack for most of us. I’d love to see this in one presentation, and on the screen. Home just isn’t going to cut it. But for a project that was once deemed wholly uncommercial, I’ll take what I can get for now.

IFC has clarified things — I had important details wrong. The four-hour roadshow version will open for one week in LA and NYC on 12/12 as reported. Steven Soderbergh will appear for an opening night Q&A in New York, while Benecio Del Toro and producer Laura Bickford will appear at the  LA opening. Those presentations, at the Ziegfield in New York and the Landmark in LA, will be digital projections.

The full theatrical rollout is very different from what I reported yesterday, however. Here are the correct details from the release:

CHE will re-open on January 9th in New York and Los Angeles as two separate admissions titled CHE PART 1:  THE ARGENTINE and CHE PART 2:  GUERRILLA.  A national rollout will follow to the top 25 markets on January 16th and 22nd with further expansions planned.  The 2 parts will be released simultaneously in each market.

On January 21st, IFC will also make the separate parts available on IFC In Theaters, its video on demand platform.  The 2 parts will be available in 50 million homes nationwide on all major cable and satellite providers in both standard and high definition versions.