Warner Bros. has announced a few new release dates for upcoming films, and one in particular should get folks excited. Ben Affleck’s long-awaited directorial follow-up to Best Picture-winner Argo finally started rolling cameras late last year, and now Warner Bros. has given the Prohibition era crime thriller Live by Night a vote of confidence by way of an October 20, 2017 release date (per ERC Box Office). That’s an incredibly awards-friendly berth, signaling the film could make the fall film festival circuit before hitting theaters in late October, with potential box office success carrying it through Oscar season. It’s a route similar to the one Argo took, which was released on October 12, 2012, so Warner Bros. must be feeling pretty bullish on the movie’s prospects.
Affleck wrote, produced, directed, and stars in the Dennis Lehane adaptation, which follows the son of a Boston police captain in the 1920s as he makes the rise from bootlegger to notorious gangster. Affleck initially planned to start production on the picture in 2013, but pushed it back for the opportunity to work with David Fincher on Gone Girl, after which he pushed the film even further when WB came calling with the offer to play Batman in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. The cast for Live by Night also includes Sienna Miller, Zoe Saldana, Elle Fanning, and Brendan Gleeson and the film currently has the October 20th weekend to itself, though it arrives a week after the Michael Fassbender-led thriller The Snowman.
Additionally, Warner Bros. has staked out August 11, 2017 for an “Untitled WB Event Film”, putting it up against The Emoji Movie. Your guess is as good as ours as to the identity of said “event film,” but it may not be a DC superhero film as WB usually classifies those as “Untitled DC Film.” The last time WB dated untitled event films, they were sequels to Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.
The studio also announced that the sequel to the Conjuring spinoff Annabelle will arrive on May 19, 2017, which is prime placement for the horror film given that it doesn’t even have a director yet. Annabelle 2 will square off directly against Baywatch on the summer date.
And finally, the Ice Cube and Charlie Day-fronted comedy Fist Fight will open in theaters on February 17, 2017. It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia alum Richie Keen directs the story of a feud between high school teachers, with Christina Hendricks and Jillian Bell also starring. The February 17th weekend is mighty crowded at the moment, with The Dark Tower, the Matt Damon actioner The Great Wall, and Maze Runner: The Death Cure all slated for release as well, though I’d be surprised if all three stay put.