Universal is putting the brakes on the marketing for their Blumhouse release The Hunt in the wake of recent mass shootings which have taken the lives of 34 people in El Paso, Texas; Dayton, Ohio; and Gilroy, California.
“Out of sensitivity to the attention on the country’s recent shooting tragedies, Universal Pictures and the filmmakers of The Hunt have temporarily paused its marketing campaign and are reviewing materials as we move forward,” said a studio rep in a statement.
The pic’s release date will remain unchanged for the Sept. 27 thriller which follows 12 red-state strangers who wake up in a clearing and realize that they’re being hunted by liberals. Betty Gilpin and Oscar winner Hilary Swank play women on opposite sides of the political spectrum, conservative and liberal, who are targeting each other.
Deadline hears that there will not be any TV or digital spots for The Hunt, nor will there be any outdoor advertisements. Last weekend, ESPN yanked an ad for the pic that it had previously approved. However, AMC aired a spot for the pic during its season premiere of The Preacher.
Hollywood following tragic events that have impacted our nation has scaled back before out of respect. Post Sept. 11, Warner Bros. pushed back its Arnold Schwarzenegger release Collateral Damage and disposed of a trailer that featured a stateside bomb attack. MGM’s Death Wish 2017 remake was delayed many months out of respect for the mass shooting in Las Vegas.
Back in August 2015, Universal’s sister cable network USA posted the season 1 finale of Mr. Robot by a week given a scene which was far too similar to real-life murders that occurred on live TV at the time. A reporter on the day of the season finale, and cameraman for WDBJ-TV in Roanoke, Va., were shot and killed while delivering a live report for the station’s morning news program by a suspected former co-worker.
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