The Help Release Date Moved Up To August 10

By Eric Eisenberg 2011-06-30 21:21:49discussion comments
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There are likely many film fanatics finding themselves going broke this summer. In the past two months every single weekend has brought in a new and exciting blockbuster for moviegoers to spend their money on, and while you'd think this would be a great thing for the industry, it also has a serious downside: with the way the schedule is structured, every film has to make the big bucks during its first weekend or it will simply won't go anywhere. Acknowledging this fact, Paramount Pictures decided a few weeks ago to completely ignore the date on all of their marketing materials and release Transformers: Dark of the Moon on June 29th instead of July 1st. The move has worked in their favor, the robot-filled sequel on pace to become 2011's biggest hit, so now other studios are taking the hint, namely Dreamworks Pictures with The Help.

The studio has sent out an email announcing that rather than being released on Friday August 12, the new Tate Taylor film will find its way into theaters on August 10. In addition to giving the film some breathing room against weekend competition including 30 Minutes or Less and Final Destination 5, the move will also give it a chance to quickly take down The Change Up and The Smurfs, which are being released the week before. Based on the best selling novel by Kathryn Stockett, the film is a period piece in which Emma Stone stars as Eugenia 'Skeeter' Phelan, a woman who begins to write a series of articles in defense of the African-American women in their community who helped raise them as children, but in doing so shatters social norms and earns the scourge of many. The movie co-stars Viola Davis, Bryce Dallas Howard, Jessica Chastain, Mary Steenburgen, Allison Janney, and Sissy Spacek.

Obviously the idea becomes moot if every film were to be released on a Wednesday instead of a Friday, but I still wonder why more studios aren't implementing this idea. The smaller the number of competitors and increased number of days in wide release will only help the movie in the long run. The question is whether women, the project's target audience, will have the same availability and access to the film that the out-of-school kids did with Transformers.
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