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‘Apocalypto’ shuffle

Mouse slates Gibson pic for the holidays

HOLLYWOOD — Disney is moving Mel Gibson’s “Apocalypto” from late summer into the heart of the holiday season, Dec. 8.

Move may be due to production delays, but the pushback gives it a somewhat thinner playing field, as this year’s holiday season is currently lighter than last year’s, while August is crowded.

On its old date, Aug. 4, Mayan-language “Apocalypto” was up against Sony’s Will Ferrell comedy “Talladega Nights” and Warner Bros.’ toon “Ant Bully.” On Dec. 8, it faces Sony’s Nancy Meyers comedy “The Holiday” and Warner’s football pic “We Are Marshall.”

Mouse House also may be able to promote “Apocalypto” more for awards season with a December opening.

Looking to keep up its summer presence, Disney moved two films up to August along with the shift: Dancing pic “Step Up” has been pushed up from fall to Aug. 11. True-life football story “Invincible” was moved from January to Aug. 25.

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