New dates for Vaughn's 'Kick-Ass,' Stallone's 'Expendables'

Honing its 2010 release sked, Lionsgate will release Matthew Vaughn’s action-comedy “Kick-Ass” on April 16 and shift Sylvester Stallone starrer “The Expendables” from April 23 to Aug. 20.

Lionsgate decided to jump on the August date in light of how well male-driven fare is performing at the late-summer box office.

This past weekend, Warner Bros./New Line’s 3-D horror pic “The Final Destination” opened to a boffo $27.4 million domestically, while “Halloween II” grossed a respectable $16.3 million in its debut. The previous weekend, the Weinstein Co.’s male-skewing “Inglourious Basterds” opened to a boffo $38.1 million.

Lionsgate acquired North American distrib rights to “Kick-Ass” shortly after Comic-Con. Pic, starring Nicolas Cage and Aaron Johnson, is based on the bestselling comic by Mark Millar and John Romita Jr. Storyline revolves around a young boy who inspires a subculture of wannabe superheroes who have no powers.

Pic was privately financed by Vaughn’s Marv Films and Brad Pitt’s Plan B Entertainment.

“Kick-Ass” goes up against the Weinstein Co.’s “Piranha 3-D,” Sony’s Chris Rock/Tracy Morgan starrer “Death at a Funeral” and Universal’s “MacGruber,” based on the “Saturday Night Live” sketch.

So far, “Expendables” has the Aug. 20 weekend to itself. Directed by Stallone, pic teams him with Jason Statham and Jet Li. Film follows a group of mercenaries who are trying to overthrow a corrupt South American dictator.

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