Warner Bros. has announced they will kick off their summer 2008 slate with Speed Racer on May 9. Pic was originally scheduled to hit theaters two weeks later, but it appears the studio wants to stay away from both Indiana Jones 4 (May 21) and The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian (May 16) which, honestly, is a pretty smart move. Might as well get a jump on the franchise films (and open on Erik's birthday!), and steer clear of any head-to-head battles on opening weekend. As of now, the only other film competing with Speed Racer is Fox's The Day the Earth Stood Still remake.
Along with the date change came word that Speed Racer will also be released day-and-date in a majority of the international markets. Dan Fellman, President of Domestic Distribution, said: "We see it as a movie with broad-based, worldwide appeal--from adults to teens to families--making it the perfect film to lead off our exciting 2008 Summer slate. We want to give Speed Racer the maximum playability throughout the season, so moving it up to the earliest possible date made the most sense."
Based on the classic animated series, Speed Racer was written and will be directed by Larry and Andy Wachowski, marking their first writing-directing gig since The Matrix trilogy. Live action pic begins shooting on June 5 in Berlin; currently there's no casting announcements, though Vince Vaughn has been circling the project (as a possible Racer X) ever since he first pitched it back in 2004. Producer Joel Silver recently denied that Vaughn would play a role in the film.