'Lone Ranger' and 'Thor 2' Among Today's Release Date Shuffle

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Walt Disney Pictures

It's easy to see a release date move as just card shuffling, but a movie's success or failure is often linked to when it comes out. Would 'Battleship' and 'Dark Shadows' tanked as hard as they did if they weren't caught in the wake of 'The Avengers?' We now have new release dates for 'The Lone Ranger,' 'Thor 2' 'The Secret Life of Walter Mitty' and more.

'The Lone Ranger' is bumping from May 31 2013, to July 3. There are two good reasons for this: one is that Steven Spielberg's 'Robopocalypse' vacated the date, the other is that they're going to get a holiday weekend in the trade-up. Currently Universal is tracking 'Snow White and the Huntsman' to open in the mid-$30's this weekend, and that's partly because they don't have a holiday or the start of summer to bring more audiences in. Now 'Ranger' has the 'Independence Day' reissue and 'Despicable Me 2' as competition, which is better all around for the movie.

'Thor 2' got moved from November 15 to November 8, 2013. What's happening here is that 'The Hunger Games: Catching Fire' is set to be released on the 22nd, and as the first film is closing in on $400 Million domestic, they'd rather have two weeks before it comes out instead of one.

Also moved is 'Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters' which went from March 15th, 2013 to August 16th. With a title like this, it can really go anywhere on a calendar, but late summer is not a bad spot for a B-list kids film.

Ben Stiller's 'The Secret Life of Walter Mitty' got its release date of Christmas Day, 2013, so they're hoping it's the big family film at the end of the year, while the buzzed-about  Paul Feig-directed Sandra Bullock/Melissa McCarthy cop comedy is now planning to hit theaters April 5th, 2013. With a film like that, if it's funny it can play at any time of the year.

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