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Gerard Butler Jumps Channing Tatum in White House Movie Race

Gerard Butler
Fabrizio Maltese

UPDATED: FilmDistrict will release "Olympus Has Fallen" in April -- nearly three months before Sony opens "White House Down."

FilmDistrict has acquired U.S. distribution rights to White House action thriller Olympus Has Fallen, starring Gerard Butler, Aaron Eckhart and Morgan Freeman.

The film, directed by Antoine Fuqua and produced by Millennium Films, will open in theaters April 5, jumping rival Sony movie White House Down.

Directed by Roland Emmerich and starring Channing Tatum, White House Down opens June 28.

In Olympus Has Fallen, Butler plays a disgraced Secret Service agent who is called back to duty when the White is overtaken by terrorists. The movie also stars Angela Bassett, Robert Forster, Cole Hauser, Ashley Judd, Melissa Leo, Dylan McDermott, Radha Mitchell and Rick Yune.

It's not the first time FilmDistrict, Millennium and Butler have teamed. On Dec. 7, FilmDistrict will release Millennium's romantic comedy Playing for Keeps, starring Butler.

FilmDistrict’s Peter Schlessel stated, “Olympus is a great action thriller that will keep audiences guessing and on the edge of their seat," FilmDistrict's Peter Schlessel said.

Olympus Has Fallen was written by Creighton Rothenberger and Katrin Benedikt and produced by Fuqua, Butler, Alan Diegel, Ed Cathell III, Danny Lerner and Mark Gill.

Butler is in theaters this weekend in surfing drama Chasing Mavericks.