Yesterday we told you that Ricky Gervais was in talks to reprise his character from the first Night at the Museum for its sequel, now titled Night at the Museum 2: Escape from the Smithsonian, and that whether or not he joined the film depended upon his very busy upcoming schedule. I told him he has to do it (seeing as he was the best part of the first film), and he definitely wants to do it, but we'll see. Now Variety tells us today that Night 2 will take Avatar's release date of May 22, 2009, with the highly-anticipated James Cameron 3D film shifting over to a December 18, 2009 release. This kinda sucks, as I'm sure a lot of you were looking forward to Avatar kicking off the summer of 2009 with a bang. Instead, it will arrive shortly before Santa does. (Am I the only one who would rather the big films come in summer? December is always so ... hectic. Shopping, lists, fat men in suits ... I could go on.) Then again, Avatar will now be released on the same weekend that saw Titanic back in 1997. So perhaps it's a lucky weekend for Cameron.
Now that Night at the Museum 2 is swapping locations, they can also include some more historical figures. Variety tells us that Reese Witherspoon has been approached to play Amelia Earhart. The trade also indicates that other cast members from the first film might return (like Gervais), but we won't hear about those moves for another few weeks. Ben Stiller is already attached to reprise his role from the first film. As a straight-up kids film, I kinda enjoyed the first Night at the Museum. While the plot was cruddy, and the bad guys weren't all that scary, the flick was very alive and entertaining ... for kids. I'm curious to see what they do with the sequel. On another front, Fox also announced that it will release Ice Age 3 in digital 3D on July 1, 2009.