In a surprising move just six weeks from its planned debut,
"Transformers: Dark of the Moon" is shifting its release date ahead two days, from Friday, July 1, to Wednesday, June 29.
Deadline first reported the shift and Paramount has since confirmed the new release date to MTV News. "Early response to footage, especially the 3-D footage, has been great so we want to get the word out that this film is as good or better than the first and much better than the last," an unnamed source told Deadline. "It's the only action movie opening between June 24th and July 15th."
Additionally, and somewhat perplexingly, other unnamed sources told The Hollywood Reporter that the studio had always planned to move the release from Friday to Wednesday, though it remains unclear why the shift wasn't announced until now.
Regardless, there's no doubt that both inside Paramount and outside among "Transformers" fans, anticipation for "Dark of the Moon" is very high following 2008's lucrative but lackluster "Revenge of the Fallen," a sequel that left even director Michael Bay disappointed. "The second one, we had a tough go," [article id="1657670"]Bay told MTV News in February.[/article] "It was a very, very tough thing to make a movie under those circumstances. It affected a lot of Hollywood at that time.
"I think it takes awhile to get it right," he added. "I think we did not want the third one to suck."
The new release date puts "Dark of the Moon" in line with the release of "Revenge of the Fallen," which pulled in $62 million on a Wednesday in June '08 -- the fourth-highest single-day opening in history. Others films to open on a Wednesday include "The Twilight Saga: Eclipse" ($68.5 million), "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince" ($58.2 million) and "Spider-Man 2" ($40.4 million).
Check out everything we've got on "Transformers: Dark of the Moon."
For breaking news, celebrity columns, humor and more -- updated around the clock -- visit MTVMoviesBlog.com.