Abe, meet James and Anna. Oh, and also Bella and Edward.
Lincoln, Steven Spielberg’s epic Civil War-era presidential portrait, will open in limited release on Nov. 9, the same weekend as Skyfall, Daniel Craig’s third outing as James Bond, and Anna Karenina, starring Keira Knightley as Tolstoy’s tragic heroine.
From there, Lincoln – which stars Daniel Day Lewis as the 16th U.S. president – will open wider on Nov. 16.
After poor Abe faced down bloodsuckers this summer in Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, that date puts him up against a few more – the morose, glittering ones found in The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 2.
Lincoln previously did not have a specific debut date, although Spielberg had said he wanted it to come out in December, in part to avoid having the film – which focuses on Lincoln’s efforts to hold the fractured nation together – become wrapped up in the election battle between President Barack Obama and former governor Mitt Romney.
“I’m not willing to allow the film to be part of the gristmill of the 2012 election cycle,” Spielberg told EW last year just before filming began in Virgina. “So I’m going to make the movie, which of course would be ready for release before the election, but it won’t come out until December of ‘12.”
As it stands now, Lincoln still will debut after the general election, but only by three days.
Spielberg had said he “didn’t mind starting a conversation, but a film like Lincoln could be used by both sides, and the only casualty will be the film.”
Let’s hope not. The last thing Lincoln’s legacy needs is another theatrical casualty.