Eastwood film "Gran Torino" gets December 17 slot

Director Clint Eastwood arrives for the New York Film Festival premiere of "Changeling" in New York October 4, 2008. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson

LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - Clint Eastwood’s “Gran Torino” guns into the marketplace on December 17 in hopes of awards-season attention.

Eastwood, who also directed the Warner Bros. release, plays a grouchy widower spurred to tough action when his neighbourhood is beset by violent gangs. The film gets its title from his character’s vintage 1973 Ford Gran Torino.

“Torino” is one of two Eastwood films seeking kudos from the nation’s critics and voting groups. His period drama “Changeling,” starring Angelina Jolie, opens wide on Friday through Universal.

Opening on a Wednesday in limited release, “Torino” will face box office competition over the subsequent December 19 weekend that includes two wide-release star vehicles -- Sony’s Will Smith starrer “Seven Pounds” and Warners’ own Jim Carrey-toplined “Yes Man.”

Reuters/Hollywood Reporter