As the release of “Movie 43” nears, one would expect to see the film’s star-studded cast making the promotional rounds for the multi-story comedy. But that certainly isn’t the case.
The film’s cast includes Halle Berry, Hugh Jackman, Naomi Watts, Kate Winslet, Emma Stone and a slew of other A-list stars. Yet no actors from “Movie 43” have come out to promote it, leading the New York Post to conclude that it’s a film “Hollywood’s A-list wants to forget.”
Based on the film’s red band trailer, it’s clear that the film’s content is shocking and offensive. It shows Berry blowing out a blind boy’s birthday candles before he gets a chance to, Watts tormenting her homeschooled son and Stone arguing over the status of an STD.
The film’s unconventional and jaw-dropping storylines are intended for adult audiences only, making it a difficult sell. Furthermore, the film is being released in January, a month in which unspectacular projects are often dumped. Aside from Oscar-caliber films that have spilled over into the early part of the year, many of the films in theaters this month have been unimpressive. “Gangster Squad,” “Brocken City” and “The Last Stand” have all received a lukewarm reception from critics and audiences.
Films such as “Parker” and “Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters,” which are slated to debut next week, have already been generating negative buzz.
“Movie 43” was scheduled to debut last spring but was delayed, which often indicates that a studio is scrambling to mend a disaster.
Despite the strikes against it, the film’s producer, Peter Farelly, told the Post that it hasn’t been buried by the studio.
“The studio is not hiding it,” Farrelly said. “We knew it would have to find its audience, and believe me, it will.”
But Farrelly did say that many of the actors wanted out of the film, including Richard Gere, who wasn’t sure if he wanted to be a part of the project but ultimately stayed on.
"They clearly wanted out! But we wouldn’t let them,” Farrelly said.
There were at least two actors that managed to avoid the film. George Clooney reportedly turned it down immediately, and Colin Farrell, who was set to play a kidnapped leprechaun, successfully bowed out. Gerard Butler eventually took over the role.
As awards season reaches its climax, it’s likely that audiences will continue catching up on Oscar-nominated films they may have missed. “Zero Dark Thirty” and “Silver Linings Playbook” are currently atop the box office, while the positively reviewed horror flick “Mama” occupies the No. 1 spot. It’s safe to say that most filmgoers won’t be heading to the theater for “Movie 43” this weekend.
“Movie 43” opens Friday.