It’s happened many times before and now it’s happened again. That is a soon-to-be released film in which some scenes or the entire film, in some way, either copies or too uncomfortably refers to a recent tragic event.
Recently there was the controversy over the upcominng Fox summer comedy Neighborhood Watch which some felt would have been in bad taste if the studio had continuted with its plans to release the film this summer in wake of Trayvon Martin shooting and demanded that the studio postpone the release of the film . The studio decided to go ahead with its planned summer release while changing the title of the film to The Watch.
Now Warners has a major problem on their hands with their upcoming cops vs. The Mob film Gangster Squad which is scheduled to come out on Sept 7.
In the film, set in Los Angeles diuring the 1940’s there’s major scene in which some gangsters open fire in a packed movie theater, from the back of the theater, as partons rush for the exits. Trailers for the film featured shots from the sequence and not surprisingly all trailers for the film have been removed from theaters and even from YouTube
According to reports Warners is currently considering various possiblities on how to handle this situation including pushing back the release date until next year or re-editing the film to minimize the scene or to remove it altogether.
Because of the possible changes the studio has even cancelled plans for an audience test screening that was scheduled for later this month
However, the problem is the the theater shooting sequence is a pivotal scene in the storyline of the film and re-editing it ot cutting it out completely won’t be easy. This could result in some possible reshoots or the shooting of new scenes altogether which would mean the film will be pushed back from it’s Sept 7th release date.