'Soloist' won't open AFI

Fest to announce new opening-night film Thursday

In the wake of Paramount's decision to postpone the theatrical release of "The Soloist," the movie has been pulled as the opening-night film at AFI Fest 2008.

The film's world premiere had been scheduled for Oct. 30 at Hollywood's Cinerama Dome. The fest will announce a new opening-night film Thursday.

"The Soloist," starring Robert Downey Jr. and Jamie Foxx, was moved from Nov. 21 to March 13.

In a joint statement, Paramount, DreamWorks and Participant Media said, "Due to the change in 'The Soloist' release date, we unfortunately had to withdraw from the AFI fest. It was an honor to be invited as the opening-night film and we are very grateful to the festival for their support and understanding."

Said AFI Fest artistic director Rose Kuo: "While we are greatly disappointed that AFI Fest will not have the opportunity to offer the world premiere of 'The Soloist,' AFI's priority is to honor the artists. We wish to be supportive in any endeavor that will help a film of this quality reach a greater audience."
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