Earlier this week, ComingSoon.net heard from one of our sources that Paramount might consider releasing M. Night Shyamalan’s The Last Airbender one day earlier and now producer Frank Marshall confirms it on Twitter with his tweet:
LAST AIRBENDER release date moves up to July 1st…
We’re not sure if this means the movie will play for a full day on Thursday, July 1 nationwide or it will follow a similar pattern as other Paramount movie by having "preview screenings" starting at 8 or 10 p.m. to help optimize the movie’s opening weekend box office. (10 p.m. screenings are sometimes rolled into a movie’s first weekend.)
There are many possible reasons for the move, one could be the fact the movie played well for exhibitors yesterday, something we also learn from "Le Doctor" on Twitter:
1st exhibitor screening for AIRBENDER goes extremely well…
Another could be that Paramount hopes the fans who rush out to see the movie on Thursday will enjoy it enough to post about it on Twitter themselves, allowing the movie to bring in curious moviegoers over the long 4th of July weekend. Since the holiday weekend tends to be used for travel, something that has hurt previous movies opening over the 4th of July, the move may also help make up for an inevitable drop on Sunday, allowing fans one more day to see the movie before going on vacation. The fact that the movie is being seen as the underdog against Summit’s threequel The Twilight Saga: Eclipse may be another reason, because one expects that movie will do huge business on Wednesday than tail off towards the weekend.
Here is the trailer for the anticipated release: