The shifting of release dates is nothing new and with studios grabbing dates for movies two, three and even four years out (and more), it’s not too surprising when a company like DreamWorks Animation changes its mind on a couple of their releases. Today, they announced that their sequels The Croods 2 and Puss in Boots 2: Nine Lives & 40 Thieves, which were scheduled for early November in 2017 and 2018, respectively, will now be released the weekend before Christmas.
The Croods 2 will now arrive December 22, 2017 while Puss in Boots 2 will come out a year later on December 21, 2018.
The Croods 2 would originally have come out directly between an untitled Marvel film and an untitled Warner Bros/DC film and Universal’s new animated Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas. Puss in Boots 2 would have suffered a similar fate between another untitled Marvel film and an untitled DC “event film.”
As of now, neither has any competition for those December release dates although James Cameron’s Avatar 3 (also to be distributed by 20th Century Fox) is also scheduled for an unknown date in December 2017.
While opening in early November has always proven profitable for family animated films from DreamWorks Animation’s Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa and Megamind to Pixar’s The Incredibles and Monsters, Inc., both of which got a nice bump over the Thanksgiving holidays, the weekend before Christmas can sometimes be slower since people are traveling or doing last minute holiday shopping. Though films that open that weekend also tend to have huge legs over the holidays with most people being out of work and school for up to two weeks.
We’ll have a few years to see how all of this will pan out, but for now, it’s the first bit of date shuffling for the holiday season in those years and probably won’t be the last.