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‘Boy Erased,’ ‘On the Basis of Sex’ Score New Release Dates

Focus Features is shuffling the release dates of Oscar hopefuls “Boy Erased” and “On the Basis of Sex,” in the hopes of better positioning them to stand out in the awards season fray.

Boy Erased,” a drama about a young man’s experience with gay conversion therapy, will debut in limited release on Nov. 2. Its arthouse competition will be the Rosamund Pike drama “A Private War,” as well as the wide release bows of horror remake “Suspiria,” “The Nutcracker and the Four Realms,” and “Bohemian Rhapsody,” a biopic about Queen’s Freddie Mercury.

On the Basis of Sex,” a drama about a key court case in Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s career, is also getting pushed back by more than a month. It will debut in limited release on Dec. 25 instead of Nov. 9, when it was originally slated to bow. In its new date, “On the Basis of Sex” will contend with “Mary Poppins Returns,” as well as several holdovers from the previous weekend, a group that includes such heavy-hitters as “Alita: Battle Angel,” “Aquaman,” and “Bumblebee.”

“Boy Erased” could score Oscar nods for Lucas Hedges, who plays the son of a Baptist preacher struggling to come to terms with his sexuality, as well as for Nicole Kidman, portraying his mother. Joel Edgerton, best known for appearing in the likes of “Red Sparrow” and “Loving,” directs and Russell Crowe plays Hedges’ fire-and-brimstone spouting father.

“On the Basis of Sex” follows in the footsteps of “RBG,” a breakout hit documentary about the Supreme Court Justice and feminist icon. It could bring Felicity Jones, an Oscar nominee for “Theory of Everything,” back into the bauble hunt with her chameleonic turn as Ginsburg. The film focuses on the jurist’s younger days, following her week on a groundbreaking case that attempts to overturn institutionalized gender discrimination. Armie Hammer co-stars as Ginsburg’s husband, Marty, and the film is directed by Mimi Leder (“Deep Impact”).

Focus, the indie label of Universal, has several possible Oscar plays this fall. The studio is also releasing Spike Lee’s “BlacKkKlansman,” a drama that earned raves when it screened at Cannes, and “Mary Queen of Scots,” a historical drama with Margot Robbie and Saoirse Ronan.

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