According to HitFlix, a Summit Entertainment spokesperson has confirmed that Breaking Dawn will open nationwide on Nov. 18, 2011. Still no word on if it will be one more or two. The Los Angeles Times 24 Frames blog speculates on the 17 month delay between Eclipse and Breaking Dawn:
The surprising news here is that the movie, which will likely shoot in the fall, won’t be accelerated to come out next summer (as the third film, “Eclipse,” will when it’s released in June). Instead, Summit will wait another five months to bring out “Dawn” — which means it will be nearly 18 months between the release of the third and fourth movies in the franchise, the longest layoff since “Twilight” began. (While Summit said in the announcement that it wouldn’t confirm a fifth film carved out of the latter part of the “Breaking Dawn” novel — which furthers the mythology of Bella, Edward, Jacob and everyone else you’ve either devoured or struggled to avoid lo these many months – it would be almost shocking if they didn’t do just that.)
It’s hard to know what’s motivating the 17-month lag. Talent schedules would seem to be a factor, but almost as likely, especially given the fifth-movie talk, is that the fourth and fifth films would need to be shot back-to-back — which, depending on how it’s shot and edited, could require more time.