'Breaking Dawn' Release Date Set: November 18, 2011

When Bill Condon was announced as the director for "Breaking Dawn," we guessed that some more big answers — one movie or two; 3-D or 2-D; release date — would be coming our way soon after. And today we get at least one of them: "Breaking Dawn" will hit theaters November 18, 2011.

The news comes by way of Nikki Finke at Deadline: Hollywood. She's been a bit preemptive in the past, but this sounds pretty much like what we've been expecting. It is the same weekend both "Twilight" and "New Moon" have been released the past two years, and "Eclipse" is the anomaly because it is going to be released in the summer.

This year, another big young adult hit is going to be taking its spot: "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1" is set to release on November 19.

Ever since the possibility of "Breaking Dawn" being released as two films was announced, it was almost instantly clear that Summit was looking to follow Warner Bros.'s desire to make two films to milk their money-maker for all it's worth stay as close to the lengthy final book in their series as possible. If "Breaking Dawn" continues to follow the "Deathly Hallows" path, then we can expect part two — IF there is a part two — on or around July 13, 2012.

For those of you a little out of the loop, "Breaking Dawn" is set to start filming this fall, once Summit decides whether they're splitting the film or not, and gets new contracts written for their leading men and women. And, for those of you out there worried about how far off this seems, you will at least have both parts of "Deathly Hallows" to distract you between June 30, 2010 and November 18, 2011, which is consolation enough for us.

Was this release date a surprise to you? Are you sad that "Breaking Dawn" is more than a year and a half away?