I hate to spread totally speculative bad buzz, but if any advance development merits the term "not a good sign," it's a movie getting its release date pushed back seven months to early September, the year's most notorious dumping ground. Yep -- Richard Kelly's The Box is now scheduled to be released by Warner Bros. on September 11, 2009.

Now, to be clear, its original February release date wasn't exactly a plum spot either. But occasionally something sneaks through early in the year -- think Cloverfield. The few weeks around Labor Day are where movies go to die. The only recent exception I can think of is 3:10 to Yuma.

I'm hoping against hope that the switch isn't actually a vote of no confidence, since a Twilight Zone-style sci-fi film from the director of Donnie Darko sounds fantastic. If it is a low-confidence move, I'm hoping it's a case of a studio not knowing a good movie from a hole in the wall. That happens a fair amount, don't you know. Richard Kelly could use a boost after Southland Tales sank last year.

The Box is about a suburban couple who receive a mysterious wooden box with a single button. The box comes with a promise that if one of them presses the button in the next 24 hours, they will get a million dollars -- but somewhere in the world, someone will die. The film stars James Marsden, Cameron Diaz and Frank Langella.

[hat tip: Cinema Blend]