Just last week, Universal Pictures caused a stir when it moved 'Snow White and the Huntsman' from December 2012 to June 1, just three weeks before the previously established June 29, 2012, release of Relativity Media's 'The Brothers Grimm: Snow White.' Now, Relativity is biting back by moving 'The Brothers Grimm: Snow White' to March 16, 2012, more than two months ahead of Universal's rival fairy-tale pic.
Unfortunately for Universal, it doesn't seem like there's much it can do to counteract Relativity's move. 'Grimm' is set to start shooting next month, while 'Huntsman' goes before cameras at the end of summer, and according to Variety, the 'Huntsman' start date cannot be moved up because star Chris Hemsworth is currently filming Joss Whedon's superhero mega-movie 'The Avengers' and simply will not be free to begin work for Universal until later this year.
Both films are already on a tight schedule. By moving 'Grimm' to March, Relativity is only allowing itself a 10-month turnaround time on the project, a short time frame for a big-budget fantasy film.
Moving 'Huntsman' to June was already a bold move for Universal, allotting director Rupert Sanders' film, which features Kristen Stewart as Snow White and Charlize Theron as the Evil Queen, fewer than 10 months from the start of filming to its debut in theaters. For a film of this size, a shorter time frame would be virtually impossible to accommodate.
With 'Grimm' beating 'Huntsman' out of the gate, Universal will now likely have to focus its marketing on the fact that its film is a darker, more revisionist take on the traditional 'Snow White' story. Relativity's 'The Brothers Grimm: Snow White' is a more family-friendly film, with newcomer Lily Collins starring as Snow White opposite Armie Hammer as the dashing Prince Andrew and Julia Roberts playing against type as the Evil Queen.