Universal cancels release of violent satire The Hunt after Trump criticism

0

Studio scraps movie about a group of elites hunting ‘deplorables’ following gun violence across US and tweet by Trump

The Hollywood studio behind a violent satire depicting a dozen supposedly red state Americans who wake up in a clearing and realize they are being stalked for sport by elite liberals, is to scrap the movie’s release, days after announcing it would not promote or market the film.

The Hunt, produced by Blumhouse, the independent film house known mostly for low-budget horror films such as Paranormal Activity and The Purge as well as also the Oscar winner BlacKkKlansman, was due to come out on 27 September. News of the decision was first disclosed by the Hollywood Reporter.

But a string of extremist gun massacres in Ohio, Texas and California which resulted in more than 30 deaths has reignited a debate about gun control legislation. Blumhouse and distributor Universal Pictures have now said it would no longer release the movie, which Donald Trump had apparently accused of depicting “Liberal Hollywood is Racist at the highest level, and with great Anger and Hate!”

While not naming the film directly, the president tweeted on Friday: “They like to call themselves ‘Elite,’ but they are not Elite. In fact, it is often the people that they so strongly oppose that are actually the Elite. The movie coming out is made in order to inflame and cause chaos. They create their own violence, and then try to blame others. They are the true Racists, and are very bad for our Country!”

He continued his attack while talking to reporters on Friday.

“Hollywood, I don’t call them the elites. I think the elites are the people they go after in many cases. But Hollywood is really terrible,” Trump said. “What they’re doing, with the kind of movie they’re putting out, it’s actually very dangerous for our country. What Hollywood is doing is a tremendous disservice to our country.”

That sentiment, together with a chorus of similar-minded criticism from Fox & Friends co-host Ainsley Earhardt, who called the movie “very dangerous for our country”, coincided with an re-evaluation by the distributor which, like the Hollywood film industry in general, sits uncomfortably between denouncing gun violence and supporting calls for stricter gun control while also producing routinely violent films and television.

“While Universal Pictures had already paused the marketing campaign for The Hunt, after thoughtful consideration, the studio has decided to cancel our plans to release the film,” Universal said in a statement.

“We stand by our film-makers and will continue to distribute films in partnership with bold and visionary creators, like those associated with this satirical social thriller, but we understand that now is not the right time to release this film.”

With trailers already on the web, the movie’s dialog seemed to confirm that the current, tense environment might not be a good moment to endorse any kind of human hunting, whether from the right or left of the political spectrum.

“At least the hunt’s coming up. Nothing better than going out to the Manor and slaughtering a dozen deplorables,” says one character, referencing a derogatory nickname for Trump supporters, according to the Hollywood Reporter.

The film was also originally titled Red State vs Blue State.

Share.

About Author

Leave A Reply