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Arnold Schwarzenegger is not taking prisoners from the looks of Sabotage, the latest David Ayer joint. This actioner finds Arnie as the leader of a unit of armed-to-the-tonsils DEA officers who bask in the glory of taking down a major drug safe house. Their victory is short-lived, however, as they are taken down one-by-one, with a mole suspected within their ranks. Open Road is releasing the actioner, and they’re feeling confident enough that the movie is about to make a movie.
Open Road just announced that, damn the torpedoes, we’re gonna get to see Sabotage two weeks early: the action picture is now set to open on March 28th, instead of the original slated date of April 11th. No statement was released by Open Road, though it seems like they think that date was going to be crowded. They would have fought for the male demographic with Draft Day, while Relativity launched the horror film Oculus and The Weinstein Company-released comedy St. Vincent. And, of course, the big release that weekend would be Rio 2, the sequel to the $484 million-grossing Rio. And in the cities, you would have also gotten a chance to see Nicolas Cage in Joe or Jim Jarmusch’s Only Lovers Left Alive.
Sabotage is taking on its own massive beast, however. March 28th is when Darren Aronofsky unleashes the $130 million Noah, the troubled Biblical film that pits Russell Crowe against the elements. That’s some rough opposition: Noah is aimed towards some of the evangelicals that made The Passion Of The Christ a hit, though there’s a huge spillover between that crowd and the ones who turn up to watch Arnold shoot stuff. It also shows a tremendous amount of confidence in Schwarzenegger’s star power, as The Last Stand was a tremendous flop, and while it was big overseas, Escape Plan collected only $25 million domestically. Does Open Road know something we don’t about Noah?
Also opening that date is the broad comedy A Haunted House 2, which is also from Open Road. It’s possible they move their comedy from that date, though if it stays put the R-rated dollar is going to be stretched pretty thin on March 28th. Speaking of which: how vast with Focus’ nationwide expansion for Bad Words be? Independent dramas Cesar Chavez and Breathe In are going to be competing for a lot of eyeballs on that weekend. Sabotage might have been better off staying in April.
Oh, wait, what’s that? The Raid 2: Berandal is also coming out on that day? Well then. If you’re an action fan and you’re watching Arnie instead of the sequel to The Raid, you just might not be an action fan.