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Paramount Pushes ‘Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters’ to January 2013

After getting a first look at Jeremy Renner in August's The Bourne Legacy, it left some of us wondering: why haven't we seen more than one still image of Renner in this March's Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters? Turns out it's because Paramount has been planning a schedule shift. Instead of Mar. 2, the fairy tale-based action comedy will hit theaters January 11, 2013.

A studio exec told Deadline that the move was due to an expected rise in Renner's international profile after he stars in May's The Avengers and the aforementioned "Bourne" sequel later this year. Considering The Devil Inside just made the studio more than $30 million this weekend, confidence is also high for a success in January.

Behind that oddly confident statement is the obvious fact that good films rarely get pushed to January, and that Paramount doesn't feel good enough about the film to expect it to compete against a slew of action/adventure films being released in the weeks after the original date: Disney's John Carter (Mar. 9), Relativity's Mirror, Mirror (Mar. 16), Lionsgate's highly anticipated The Hunger Games (Mar. 23) and Warner Bros. sequel Wrath of the Titans (Mar. 30). Also, instead of leading the charge for 2012's many live-action twists on fairy tales, it will have to hope audiences haven't soured on them one year from now.

"Hansel & Gretel" stars Renner and Gemma Arterton as the grown-up version of the siblings who had that infamous close encounter with a witch as children. Now they hunt wicked witches for a living. Famke Janssen and Peter Stormare also star in Tommy Wirkola's (Dead Snow) film.

Paramount has also moved comedy Jeff Who Lives At Home starring Jason Segel from Mar. 2 to a limited Mar. 16 release and Eddie Murphy vehicle A Thousand Words from Mar. 23 to Apr. 20.


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