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Quvenzhane Wallis' 'Annie' to Hit Theaters Christmas 2014

'Annie' Moves Up a Week, Avoids Christmas Day Crush'Annie' Moves Up a Week, Avoids Christmas Day Crush

Wasting no time, Sony Pictures Entertainment has staked out Christmas Day 2014 for the theatrical release of Annie, starring Quvenzhane Wallis in the title role.

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The studio announced that Wallis would star in the film only hours before the Jan. 24 Academy Awards ceremony, where the young actress was up for the Oscar for her role in indie breakout Beasts of the Southern Wild.

Will Gluck is directing Annie, based on the iconic stage musical. Will Smith's Overbrook Entertainment is producing the movie with Marcy Media.

“With the recent Academy Award nomination and critical acclaim, Quvenzhané Wallis is a true star and we believe her portrayal as Annie will make her a true worldwide star.  She is an extraordinary young talent with an amazing range, not only as an actress but as a singer and dancer, and we can’t wait for audiences to further discover her," said Sony president of production Hannah Minghella.

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She announced the Dec. 25, 2014, release date in tandem Columbia Pictures president Doug Belgrad.