Sundance Favorite 'Me and Earl and the Dying Girl' Hitting Theaters Early

Courtesy of Fox Searchlight
Thomas Mann, Olivia Cooke

The quirky indie drama is based on Jesse Andrews' YA novel.

The critically acclaimed teenage tearjerker Me and Earl and the Dying Girl will open in theaters earlier than expected.

Fox Searchlight announced Tuesday it is moving up the film's release from July 1 to June 12. The quirky drama will open in select theaters before slowly expanding.

Earl was the star of the 2015 Sundance Film Festival, winning both the U.S. dramatic grand jury prize and the U.S. dramatic audience award. Searchlight beat out a number of other suitors in acquiring rights to the movie, directed by Alfonso Gomez-Rejon and based on Jesse Andrews' YA novel (Andrews also wrote the screenplay).

In the film, Thomas Mann stars as an awkward senior forced by his mother to spend time with a classmate he hasn't talked to since kindergarten, and who has just been diagnosed with cancer. Olivia Cooke plays the girl.

The reason for the move? Last week, YA film adaptation Paper Towns moved from June 5 to July 24. From big Fox, Paper Towns is based on John Green's coming-of-age novel and will open nationwide.

Opening Earl in early June gives Searchlight more summer playtime. It also puts the film's release closer to the Cannes Film Festival, where it could get an out-of-competition berth, although it's unclear whether Searchlight is submitting the movie to festival organizers.