In an extremely unsurprising turn of events, Hot Tub Time Machine 2 has been shifted from its previous Christmas release date to February 20th of next year. The holiday season is always tremendously crowded at the box office, and the competition is so steep this year that the raunchy sequel wouldn’t have stood an ice cube’s chance in hell at the box office.
Clark Duke, Rob Cordrry, Craig Robinson, Chevy Chase and Collette Wolfe all return for the follow-up, in which Lou (Cordrry) becomes the father of the Internet and is shot by an unknown assailant from the future, leading the gang to jump into the time machine to save their friend. John Cusack is not returning, and Parks and Recreation‘s Adam Scott will be taking on a new role to fill in for him. Community‘s Gillian Jacobs also has a part.
In its previous slot, the flick would have been locking horns with Seth Rogen and James Franco’s The Interview, which is shaping up to be a major box office player. The comedy, which centers on two American journalists who travel to North Korea and are roped into a CIA plot to assassinate Kim Jong-Un, has been building buzz for a while, and the response to the trailers has already painted The Interview as the film to beat this Christmas.
Also set for release this Christmas are a slew of Oscar contenders, including Clint Eastwood’s war drama American Sniper, starring Bradley Cooper as U.S. Navy SEAL Chris Kyle; Tim Burton’s biopic Big Eyes, which stars Amy Adams as painter Margaret Keane and Christoph Waltz as her domineering husband Walter; Rob Marshall’s musical fantasy Into the Woods; Ava DuVernay’s civil rights biopic Selma; and Angelina Jolie’s WWII survival drama Unbroken.
With all that competition, a release date move makes sense for Hot Tub Time Machine 2. As it is, the holiday season is going to be obnoxiously crowded, and February feels like a more solid time to release a comedy like this.