Not unlike the Truman Capote biopic showdown of 2006, which was inarguably won by Sony Picture Classics' Oscar-winning 'Capote,' Universal and Relativity have been trying to one up the other by attaching top talent to their respective pics. 'Huntsman' just secured 'Thor' breakout Chris Hemsworth to star opposite Kristen Stewart as Snow White and Charlize Theron as the Evil Queen. 'Grimm' has Julia Roberts playing against type as its Evil Queen with newcomer Lily Collins tackling the Snow White role opposite 'Social Network' star Armie Hammer's handsome prince.
By all accounts, Relativity's 'Brothers Grimm' was the first out of the gate. The Hollywood Reporter notes that Relativity picked up the script, by Melissa Wallack, in June 2010, and attached Roberts to star soon after. By September, Universal decided to move forward with 'Huntsman,' and both projects spent the remainder of 2010 and early 2011 casting.
'Huntsman,' a more revisionist take on the tale, had trouble nailing down its main man. Viggo Mortensen was attached to star before leaving the project earlier this year. Several other actors circled, with Hemsworth ultimately landing the Huntsman role.
Universal cited "adjustments to the production timeline" as its reasoning for moving 'Huntsman,' though did not specify when filming was set to begin. Relativity's 'The Brothers Grimm: Snow White,' to be directed by Tarsem Singh ('Immortals'), is scheduled to start filming late this summer.
Exactly when Hemsworth will be free to film 'Huntsman' remains unclear. The actor is filming another 2012 summer tent pole, the Marvel Comics superhero mega-movie 'The Avengers,' which is currently lensing in New Mexico.
Universal's decision to move 'Huntsman' impacts another of the studio's big films, director Judd Apatow's next film, an untitled comedy starring Apatow regulars Paul Rudd and Leslie Mann as well as Albert Brooks and Megan Fox. Apatow's film will now take over 'Huntsman's' old release date, Dec. 21, 2012.