‘Letters’ posts U.S. date

WB sets 'Iwo' opening

“Letters From Iwo Jima,” Clint Eastwood’s ambitious companion piece to “Flags of Our Fathers,” has been dated and stamped.

Warner Bros. Pictures will open the Japanese-language film in the U.S. on Feb. 9.

Move ends plenty of speculation as to how much time Eastwood would allow between “Flags” — which Paramount/DreamWorks bows domestically on Oct. 20 — and “Letters.”

There also had been buzz about a possible qualifying run in December for “Letters.” Now, the awards campaign will focus on “Flags.”

As previously announced, “Letters” will open Dec. 9 in Japan.

Warner Bros., working closely with Eastwood, decided February was the best time to open “Letters” domestically, since it gives the film a chance to build both on the success of the Japan opening and the release of “Flags.”

Studio also believed “Letters” should play first in Japan.

The two films respectively tell the story of the WWII battle of Iwo Jima from the American and Japanese perspectives.

Eastwood came up with the unprecedented idea midway through shooting “Flags,” written by Paul Haggis. Japanese-American scribe Iris Yamashita penned the screenplay for “Letters.”

DreamWorks and Warner Bros. are partners on both pics.

Warner will handle the international release of “Flags” and the worldwide release of “Letters.” It will begin to roll out “Letters” in other international territories in February as well.

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