A few release date shifts have arisen. First up, Deadline reports that Focus Features is pushing the action sequel London Has Fallen from January 22, 2016 to March 4, 2016. Directed by Babak Najafi, the follow-up to the surprisingly successful Olympus Has Fallen was put into development very quickly, although it had trouble keeping a director onboard ahead of the production start-date. Gerard Butler returns as head of U.S. Secret Service who now must stop a massive assassination plot at the British prime minister’s funeral. Aaron Eckhart, Morgan Freeman, Angela Bassett, Melissa Leo, Robert Forster, and Jackie Earle Haley also star.
London Has Fallen will now open directly opposite Tim Burton’s Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, the thriller Triple Nine, the Sacha Baron Cohen comedy Grimsby, and the animated feature Zootopia.
Additionally, fresh off the film’s North American premiere at the 2015 Toronto International Film Festival, Brian Helgeland’s real-life gangster pic Legend has been pushed from this coming October 2nd to a limited release on November 20th followed by an expansion on November 25th. Tom Hardy leads the film in dual roles as the infamous twin Kray Brothers. I caught the film at TIFF and while Hardy does some interesting work, the film itself is an unfortunate slog that really wants to be Goodfellas but falls way short. Read my full review here.
The release date push could have something to do with the mixed reviews out of TIFF, or, more likely, Universal is now aware of just how big a hit The Martian will be on October 2nd and wants to get very, very far away. The Martian also premiered at TIFF to solid notices—I caught the movie myself and it is supremely entertaining. It’s not hard to see the potential for it to become one of the year’s biggest blockbusters.
And finally, the troubled Jane Got a Gun looks like it will actually be released in theaters in 2016. The film’s director, Lynne Ramsay, left the project on the first day of filming, after which Gavin O’Connor stepped in—but not after a revolving door of actors shuffled around the roles. The finished Western stars Natalie Portman, Joel Edgerton, and Ewan McGregor, but while completed it was caught up in Relativity’s bankruptcy. Now The Weinstein Company has come onboard to distribute, but despite O’Connor’s wishes to have the film in awards contention, TWC will instead be releasing the picture sometime in February 2016 after a European release this November.
Update: The festival favorite Brooklyn is getting a slight release date shift. The film stars Saoirse Ronan as a young Irish woman who moves to New York in search of opportunity, but finds herself stuck between two worlds, unsure of where she belongs. Brooklyn was originally slated for November 6th release, but Fox Searchlight will now give the film a limited release two days earlier on November 4th.