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Inside Move: Disney wakes ‘Bear’ for Sat. bow

Pic now skedded to hit theaters on Nov. 1

The Mouse House is poised to take the unusual step of moving family tooner “Brother Bear” to a Saturday opening.

Disney sees benefits in getting the pic out a bit sooner than its previously skedded slot of Nov. 7, and is about to move up the release date by one weekend. But the Friday of the preceding weekend is Halloween. So rather than competing with costumed hobgoblins and ghosts, the studio will unspool “Bear” on Nov. 1.

The only wide opener skedded for Halloween on Oct. 31 is 20th Century Fox’s re-release of “Alien” in 1,000-plus theaters. (Re-release will feature newly added footage not included even on the DVD version of the 1979 sci-fi classic.)

One benefit of the earlier “Bear” bow involves added playtime prior to Mouse’s Nov. 26 debut of another family tooner, “The Haunted Mansion.” “Bear” features voice perfs by Joaquin Phoenix, Michael Clarke Duncan and Rick Moranis. “Mansion” is voiced by Eddie Murphy and Terrence Stamp.

Disney sees little downside to opening on a Saturday, which is rare but not unprecedented. Of course, exhibs may sell a bit less concession-stand candy on the day after trick-or-treating.

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