Back in July of last year, after Warner Bros, MGM and New Line Cinema decided to turn The Hobbit from two films to three, the studios (and maybe Peter Jackson) staked out summer 2014 for the third film, now subtitled with There and Back Again (which was to be the title of the second film). Of course back in July of 2012, no studio was thinking that far ahead, so it had the day free and clear.
Then in September, Warner Bros and MGM announced that the third film would debut on July, 18 2014, seven months after the second film bowed (The Desolation of Smaug is now set for December 13, 2013) in almost the same pattern as the two-part final Harry Potter movie.
But in a surprise move, Warner Bros his moving The Hobbit: There and Back Again to December 17, 2014. The official reason is that Twentieth Century Fox has now scheduled X-Men: Days of Future Past (and sequel to First Class) to open that day now as well. I was always leery of the summer release for the last Hobbit film, but based on how bad Bryan Singer’s Jack the Giant Slayer is tracking, I’m curious if Warners is moving it because they believe Hobbit will do better in December (and as of now, the only film scheduled to open on December 17, but that will change) or that no matter how poorly Jack does (it’s set to become the first expensive bomb of 2013) Singer’s X-Men will do better because its and X-Men film?