'Dark' will see light on Columbus Day weekend

Launching three months ago, family-friendly Fox Walden Films has finalized the release sked for its first four titles, relocating “The Dark Is Rising” to Columbus Day weekend from the original Sept. 8 date.

Fox Walden will unspool writer-director Zach Helm’s “Mr. Magorium’s Wonder Emporium,” starring Dustin Hoffman, Natalie Portman and Jason Bateman, on Nov. 16. Pic is a co-production of Walden Media and Mandate Pictures.

Jodie Foster and Abigail Breslin starrer “Nim’s Island,” which goes into production this summer, will bow in theaters on April 25, 2008. Husband-wife team Mark Levin and Jennifer Flackett are directing the pic, while Paula Mazur is producing.

“City of Ember,” produced by Walden Media and Playtone’s Gary Goetzman and Tom Hanks, is set for release on Oct. 10, 2008. Oscar-winning director Gil Kenan (“Monster House”) will helm.

Fox Walden’s mandate is to specialize in pics for all ages.

“Dark,” directed by David L. Cunningham and starring Jonathan Jackson, Christopher Eccleston, Ian McShane and Gregory Smith, tells the story of a young man who is the last in a long line of warriors who travel back and forth in time battling evil.

“Mr. Magorium’s Wonder Emporium” concerns a fantastical toy store; “Nim’s Island” centers on an imaginary place created by a young girl; while “City of Ember” is about a city illuminated in lights that begin to go out, with two teens in a race against time to solve an ancient mystery and save the city.

Fox Walden will market and release select 20th Century Fox titles and all Walden Media films. Label maintains its own creative marketing, publicity and promotional operations.

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