In the wake of Illumination’s Nintendo movie Mario moving off of Wednesday, Dec. 21, Dreamworks Animation’s sequel Puss in Boots: The Last Wish will now take over that slot, moving back from its Sept. 23 release date.

Universal brought families back during the pandemic this past Christmas with Illumination’s Sing 2 which made $162.6M, and played wide (north of 2,000 theaters) into early April; a great hold for a family movie.

Puss in Boots: The Last Wish is the sequel to the 2011 Shrek spinoff Puss in Boots which made $149.2M domestic, close to $555M WW.

Puss in Boots: The Last Wish moves in the wake of 20th Century Studios’ Avatar 2 and Shazam! Fury of the Gods on Dec. 16, and is also opening on the same day as Sony’s I Wanna Dance With Somebody. On Christmas Day, Paramount as Damien Chazelle’s Babylon while Sony has Tom Hanks’ A Man Called Otto.

As Deadline’s Rosy Cordero first told you, Salma Hayek Pinault (EternalsHouse of Gucci) is set to reprise the role of Kitty Softpaws reteaming with Antonio Banderas who plays the titular feline. Harvey Guillén (What We Do in the Shadows) is also making his franchise debut in the role of Perro, Kitty and Puss’ canine associate.

Also part of the eensemble is Florence Pugh (Black Widow), Olivia Colman (The Favourite), Wagner Moura (Narcos), Ray Winstone (Black Widow), John Mulaney (Big Mouth), Da’Vine Joy Randolph (The Lost City), Anthony Mendez (Jane the Virgin), and Samson Kayo (Our Flag Means Death).

Joel Crawford and Januel Mercado serve as director and co-director of The Last Wish, respectively; Mark Swift will produce. All three are part of The Croods: A New Age creative team.

The film is executive produced by Illumination founder and CEO Chris Meledandri.

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