Horror prequel set for Oct. 14

Universal has set a date for “The Thing” prequel, planning to release the horror pic on Oct. 14.

The film was originally set for an April 29 release, but the studio decided to remove it from that slot and replace it with the next installment in the “Fast and the Furious” series, “Fast Five.”

The schedule change will allow for reshoots to enhance existing sequences. And given the film’s horror elements, a release closer to Halloween could be a better fit.

Based on director John Carpenter’s 1982 horror pic that starred Kurt Russell and was itself a remake of 1951’s “The Thing From Another World,” the latest version is again set in Antarctica and follows a group of U.S. scientists on an expedition who discover an alien spaceship with a frozen “thing” found nearby. When the team decides to drill into it in order to study it, the organism is set loose and begins attacking the team.

Pic is being helmed by Matthijs Van Heijningen from a script by Eric Heisserer and Ron Moore; Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Joel Edgerton and Jonathan Walker star.

Marc Abraham and Eric Newman are producing.

The studio has also announced plans to release “Johnny English Reborn” on Sept. 16.

In the sequel, Rowan Atkinson returns as the unlikely intelligence officer in Her Majesty’s Secret Service who must stop a group of international assassins from killing a world leader.

Pic, to be helmed by Oliver Parker, also stars Dominic West and Rosamund Pike.

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