In the past few days, Warner Bros. have been faced with what must have been a very difficult decision surrounding Ruben Fleischer’s highly anticipated film, Gangster Squad.
The film’s trailer was originally attached to prints of The Dark Knight Rises in the US, but was soon pulled following the shooting that took place at the midnight screening in Aurora, Colorado.
The difficulty in question arises from one scene in the film, featured in the trailer, in which machine-gun fire is sprayed into a crowded movie theatre from behind the screen.
Because the scene is said to be an integral part of the film, it couldn’t simply be cut in the wake of the shooting, and leave the film narratively intact. Instead, Warner Bros. have officially decided that they will rewrite and reshoot it, and in order to do that, have pushed back its release date to January 11th, 2013.
The film was originally to be released in the US in just a few weeks, on 7th September, but getting a rewrite and reshoot of such an integral scene clearly would have been pushing it in such a short time window, and allowing the extra months will hopefully make sure that it isn’t just a rushed job.
The debate will of course arise as to whether such a decision is necessary.
The film has long been one of the most anticipated of the year, with a leading cast of Ryan Gosling, Emma Stone, Sean Penn, and Josh Brolin making for all but a guaranteed success, with Fleischer making a transition from the comedy we’ve seen from him in Zombieland and 30 Minutes or Less.
Whilst it certainly seems a shame to have Fleischer and writer Will Beall’s original vision for the film altered, the decision from the studio can’t have been an easy one, and is ultimately understandable.
We can only hope that the original version of the film will make it onto the DVD/Blu-ray release next year, and maintain our optimism for Gangster Squad being now one of the best films of 2013, rather than 2012.