This is one of the wildest things I have ever read in an official statement from a studio in relation to a decision being made for one of their films. In a posting on Facebook, CBS Films has announced the delay of their upcoming feature Beastly starring Alex Pettyfer and Vanessa Hudgens, but that isn’t as interesting as the reasoning:
The Zac Efron movie they are referring to is Charlie St. Cloud from Universal Pictures, which will apparently retain its release date despite the fact Efron and Hudgeons have been long-time boyfriend-girlfriend. If you didn’t think Beastly looked like a CW melodrama before, they are sure painting it to be one now and the fans are none-too-happy.
Writing in the comments on the Facebook post fans have called the announcement “completely inappropriate and unprofessional” and said it shows CBS Films has a “lack of faith in Beastly.” Lack of faith indeed. This makes it look like CBS Films doesn’t think anyone other than Hudgens/Efron fans are going to turn out for Beastly. This also seems to insinuate they think all the Hudgens fans will be at St. Cloud giving Beastly absolutely nothing to gain from a July 30 release. Yeah, that certainly seems like a major lack of confidence and a very bad sign for the film overall. Perhaps just tossing it on DVD is the only way to go at this point.
I first read about the news on ComingSoon, which speculates a January release based on the January 4 scheduling of the soundtrack, but there is no official announcement as to when the film will officially see the light of day.
CBS Films has not exactly gotten off to a stellar start with their 2010 release slate, which began with Extraordinary Measures in January managing only $12 million in its box-office run. Strangely, despite awful reviews, Jennifer Lopez’s The Back-Up Plan has managed $35 million at the box-office, though with theater-studio splits in consideration it will still need some decent DVD sales to end up in the black with a $35 million budget.
Beastly has gained a decent amount of online interest as evidenced each time new bits of information come out the movie finds its way into the most previewed here on RopeofSilicon, but I’m not sure if there is much of a crossover outside the Hudgens fanbase. Unfortunately, Hudgens’s 2009 feature, Bandslam, was mishandled by Summit, which means its $5.2 million at the box-office doesn’t give us a clear idea how one of her films will do in the marketplace.
As for Charlie St. Cloud, it should do decent numbers if 17 Again is any indicator how a Zac Efron led feature can do at the box-office with a decent release and amount of marketing. I have included the trailer for Charlie St. Cloud directly below.