‘Harry Potter and The Half-Blood Prince’ Moves to Summer 2009

Oh no, we have to wait even longer?

Warner Bros. Pictures today announced that it has moved back the release date of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince to summer 2009. The sixth installment of the blockbuster Harry Potter franchise will now open day-and-date domestically and in the major international markets on July 17, 2009.

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The announcement was made by Alan Horn, President and Chief Operating Officer, Warner Bros. who stated, “Our reasons for shifting Half-Blood Prince  to summer are twofold: we know the summer season is an ideal window for a family tent pole release, as proven by the success of our last Harry Potter film, which is the second-highest grossing film in the franchise, behind only the first installment. Additionally, like every other studio, we are still feeling the repercussions of the writers’ strike, which impacted the readiness of scripts for other films–changing the competitive landscape for 2009 and offering new windows of opportunity that we wanted to take advantage of. We agreed the best strategy was to move Half-Blood Prince to July, where it perfectly fills the gap for a major tent pole release for mid-summer.”

Ouch, a little dig at the Writers Guild, there. Warner Bros. also added that this switch won’t affect the studio’s release plans for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, the seventh Harry Potter installment, which will be released in two parts.

David Heyman, the producer of all the Harry Potter films, offered, “…it was immediately apparent that [the move to summer 2009] offered us the potential to reach the widest possible audience. I am extremely proud of this latest film and of the work of David Yates and our incomparable cast; I believe we have developed and pushed the series further still. We are all looking forward to sharing it with Harry Potter fans around the world, even if we have to wait just a bit longer.”

Um, yeah! Not really fair but OK, if we must wait, we will.