Now, it's official: Warner Bros. has opted to delay the release Gangster Squad by about three months, shifting the release date from this September 7th to January 11th of next year.
Directed by Zombieland helmer Ruben Fleischer from a screenplay by former LAPD cop Will Beall, the film features an ensemble cast of actors such as Josh Brolin, Emma Stone, Ryan Gosling, Sean Penn, Anthony Mackie, Nick Nolte, Michael Pena, Mireille Enos, Giovanni Ribisi, Robert Patrick, and Josh Pence. Inspired by real events, the 1940s through 1950s-set story chronicles the battle between a group of clean Los Angeles cops and Mickey Cohen, a Brooklyn-born gangster who brought East Coast-style criminality and corruption to the Southland.
Within hours of the tragic shooting during a midnight showing of The Dark Knight Rises last Thursday, the studio requested that exhibitors immediately pull trailers for the film on account of an action scene in which bad guys fire automatic weapons from the other side of a movie screen at Grauman's Chinese Theater before stylishly stepping through the screen and into the auditorium.
That scene, glimpsed in the trailer, is said to arrive late in the film, and is fairly crucial to the narrative. With a month and a half until the September release date, it was unlikely that reshoots could be carried out in time, and to simply excise the sequence would apparently be impossible.
Though Warner Bros. has not commented on the extent of the work to be done on Gangster Squad, according to The Hollywood Reporter, the new release date is official.
The new date puts Gangster Squad up against Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters, Paramount's fairy tale actioner starring Jeremy Renner and Gemma Arterton as the title characters. Coincidentally, that film was originally set for March of this year before being unceremoniously delayed earlier this year.