Ah, the ole Hollywood “duelin’ two’fer.”
I wish that was actually a phrase, but regardless, there is a long history of studios pitting two very similar ideas against each other- which has always seemed like a dumb fucking idea to me. Lately it seems like the trend has inflated to the point that there are something like 35 Wizard of Oz-related projects currently in development, and the recently announced Sonnenfeld dinosaur movie marks the staggering fifty-thousandth alien project set for the next four years.
The battle for the live-action Snow White dollars is a bit more traditional, with Universal and Relativity duking it out with two competing projects for 2012. Universal is taking a more Twilight-infused approach by casting Kristen Stewart as Snow White, with Chris Hemsworth playing the woodsman, and Charlize Theron as the evil queen. Relativity’s project is a bit weirder but more interesting, with Tarsem directing Julia Roberts, Lily Collins, Armie Hammer, and Nathan Lane as the Queen, Snow White, the Prince, and the Prince’s servant respectively.
Here we are two paragraphs later and I’ll get to the news (to be fair, I assumed most Chewers aren’t exactly up on the latest Snow White notices)… Universal has shifted their project to June 1st, 2012 from December 21st. That’s a big jump under any circumstances, but it’s a pretty nasty move considering it puts the film a few weeks ahead of Relativity’s project, which hits on June 29th, 2012. Is Universal starting a game of hands over hands up the baseball bat, or is Relativity stuck and fucked? Probably the latter, as it’s a big deal to shift a film around, and next year is as crowded as 2011 has been/will be. I doubt Relativity will end up uprooting their film and shifting it a few weeks ahead just to be first once again, but it’s undeniable that Universal may have taken the wind out of their sails. Granted, Tarsem’s films tend to be geared more for the art-house set, but this is a project with a bit wider appeal, considering subject matter and casting.
I know you all are gnashing your teeth and crying out for these two projects, and are now left wondering how you’re going to possibly appreciate them both in such close proximity. I have no solace to offer you. This is the unfortunate result of the studio system and their “me too!” instincts, and sometimes our grit-edged Disney reinterpretations starring tween romance stars just have to suffer. When will they learn?!
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