March 22, 2011 5:10pm PT by Pamela McClintock
Fox Moves Up 'Rise of the Apes' From Thanksgiving to August
After seeing much of the movie, 20th Century Fox is moving up the release date of Rise of the Apes from Thanksgiving to Aug. 5.
In its new home, Rise of the Apes will be the final tentpole of the summer season, and capitalize on kids still being out of school.
Other movies opening on Aug. 5 include Universal's comedy The Change-Up, Summit's sci-fi alien invasion film The Darkest Hour and Sony's The Smurfs.
Just as the summer box office now begins in the first weekend of May, studios are relying on August more and more, as June and July grow more crowded. Early August has turned out several hits in recent years, including The Bourne Ultimatum and Tropic Thunder.
Rise of the Apes -- an origins story set in modern-day San Francisco -- was originally to have opened in June, but Fox pushed back the opening to Nov. 23. Directed by Rupert Wyatt, Rise of the Apes stars James Franco, Freida Pinto and Andy Serkis.
In another shift, Fox is moving back the release of The Sitter from July 14 to Dec. 9. So far it’s the only R-rated comedy set to play over the year-end holidays.