A couple of festival movies prepare for the awards season gauntlet while a prospective blockbuster gets a holiday date in this release calendar update....
First up, the Peter Jackson-produced, Amy Berg-directed, West Memphis Three documentary "West of Memphis" will start rolling out into theaters on Christmas Day (moving up from the previously announced December 28th), because nothing says Santa like child murders. Premiering at Sundance earlier this year, the film earned very strong notices, and while it follows on the heels of Joe Berlinger and Bruce Sinofsky's acclaimed "Paradise Lost" trilogy of films, it offers up evidence that seems to point to the person who actually committed the crime. The film heads to TIFF next month, with Sony Pictures Classics hoping the buzz out of Park City will continue and ride through to the end of the year.
Meanwhile, RKO and eOne Films are hoping "A Late Quartet" will show itself to be a contender when it bows at TIFF in September. Starring Philip Seymour Hoffman, Christopher Walken, Catherine Keener and Mark Ivanir, the story kicks off when the beloved cellist of a world-renowned string quartet is diagnosed with a life-threatening illness, putting their future in the balance. And with their 25th anniversary concert on the horizon, emotions, egos and passions come to the fore. The film will go limited on November 2nd.
Finally, yes, that minions movie (aka those yellow creatures from "Despicable Me") is indeed happening and Universal rightfully believes it's going to be a big hit, and they've dated the untitled film for December 19, 2014. And those are all the details on the project at the moment, other than the fact it will be co-directed by Pierre Coffin and Kyle Balda. But if you need more minions sooner than that, you can check 'em out in "Despicable Me 2" next summer on July 3, 2013. [HeyUGuys/Variety/Deadline]