IF a film is delayed, audiences tend to assume it’s because it’s not very good.
The evidence for this stretches back decades to films like Repo Men, Franklyn and some older than that.
Yet there is always the odd film that somehow manages to beat the curse, turning out to be a success, no matter how long they are left on the shelf. A recent example is Serena, which opens across the UK this weekend.
Originally announced in 2012, the film collared Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper to star, both coming off the hugely successful Silver Linings Playbook at the time, and would go on to star in American Hustle.
With filming completed towards the end of 2012, many expected Serena to have a prime spot at one of the big film festivals in 2013. But it never happened.
Then, last month, it was announced along with the rest of the London Film Festival line-up and premiered a few weeks later to moderately good reviews, proving its stint on the shelf wasn’t completely necessary.
There have been other films in the past that have escaped the delayed curse. The Cabin In The Woods, for example, was set to be released in February 2010, only to be delayed until January 2011 so it could be converted into 3D. The film, which turned out to be a runaway success with critics and audiences alike, didn’t actually debut until the South by Southwest Film Festival in March 2012, due to MGM’s well-publicised financial problems.
These films, along with the likes of Kenneth Lonergan’s fantastic Margaret, and almost every film Terence Malick has ever released, goes to show that just because a film has been delayed, doesn’t mean it’s no good.
The reasons for its delay could be down to cash flow problems, crowded marketplaces, or stars’ schedules.
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