It's in Variety now, so you know it must be official: As Kim reported last week, the U.S. arm of Senator Films has bought the U.S. distribution rights to the indie-horror movie All the Boys Love Mandy Lane from The Weinstein Company (TWC), and the movie will not be opening in theaters this weekend. In fact, the film won't be opening this year -- Senator has rescheduled the American theatrical release for "early 2008." When I wrote about the film's poster last week and speculated on why promotions for the film seemed so anemic, I thought that perhaps Mandy Lane would end up with a minimal, low-key release before heading to DVD ... I didn't imagine that the movie would change distributors entirely.

TWC is naturally spinning this news as being good for the film, claiming that Senator will give the movie a wider release than originally planned. While I'm inclined to be cynical, a look at the new distributor and release date may prove them correct. Senator International is credited as the production company behind Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle, The Grudge, Boogeyman and the upcoming Fireflies in the Garden. (Interestingly, Ghost House Pictures -- the horror-film production company started by Sam Raimi -- is considered a division of Senator International.) Senator already owned the German theatrical distribution rights for Mandy Lane -- like TWC, the company bought the rights in Toronto after the film premiered at TIFF. In short, the company does appear to be focused on marketing and distributing low-budget horror films effectively, so maybe this will work better for Mandy Lane than a perfunctory release from Dimension/TWC. In addition, the film might face less competition in the first few months of the year (when mainstream movie fare is often second-rate) than it would during the summer, and audiences might be more inclined to appreciate a horror film with touches of dark comedy.