Coming Christmas 2014: the case of the competing family fare. Disney has announced it will pit its buzzy remake of "Annie" against Sony's equally buzzy adaptation of "Into the Woods."
Both have been the subject of endless casting updates over the past several weeks. The latest news has Sandra Bullock possibly taking on the role of Miss Hannigan in "Annie"; comedian Tracey Ullman, meanwhile, will potentially join Meryl Streep, Johnny Depp and the rest of the all-star lineup that "Into the Woods" boasts.
The two films will have a heck of a feat ahead of them next year during the lead-up to their releases, which will also thrust lip-locking pals Bullock and Streep against each other at the box office.
In other Disney news, "The Muppets...Again" -- a sequel to the 2011 movie starring Jason Segel and Amy Adams -- has been retitled "Muppets Most Wanted," according to The Hollywood Reporter. Its March 21, 2014, release date holds steady. Another nostalgia-friendly Jim Henson Company production, "Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day," wil receive a Oct. 10, 2014, debut. Steve Carell stars.
Amid all the release-date news, details remain sparse when it comes to fellow Disney entity "Star Wars: Episode VII." We know now the production hopes to begin shooting in January, with a 2015 open, although no specific dates have been announced.