You've probably heard that Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince's release has been pushed back a full year and will be released on July 17, 2009. Every spring, summer, and fall, Entertainment Weekly distributes a movie preview that is packed with two and three times the regular amount of pages. It's a highlight for EW subscribers, myself included, and this fall, Daniel Radcliffe graces the cover. But it's not just that the Half-Blood coverage is premature; it's that EW and Harry Potter share a parent company, Warner Bros.. Needless to say, they're a wee bit annoyed that no one cared to tell them about the switch. (Best part of that link: "EW readers now in possession of a 'Dewey Beats Truman' collectible.")
Films get moved around all of the time -- Valkyrie has had, what, ten different release dates? -- so why am I posting on this? Well, I take great issue with Warner Bros.'s excuse. They're blaming the writer's stike, of all things. What does the writer's strike have to do with this movie? The script was already written. Production had already gone underway, and unless those pint-sized leads decided to picket with the writers over in England, I really don't understand why the writer's strike would have any effect on them since Harry Potter takes years to plan/make. I don't know what the real reason is, perhaps intimidation from The Dark Knight? I know that this studio is really banking on the financial success of Half-Blood, and now that they have second dibs (Terminator Salvation already has their date fixed) on next year's summer blockbuster schedule, they can manipulate the release of any other film coming out next year.
But the teaser trailer's already out. They're in (or near) post-production. They just want more time... but the question is why? And stop blaming the writers!
Update, 8/19:Cinematical is debunking the Half-Blood Prince rumors, including Warner Bros.'s silly fear of Twilight's release, Radcliffe being in Equus, and that they were aiming to duplicate Dark Knight's box office success by releasing it on the one-year anniversary.