Last year at the Sundance Film Festival, Searchlight Pictures acquired a new film, “Magazine Dreams”, which stars Jonathan Majors as an aspiring bodybuilder called Killian Maddox, who struggles to find human connection in this exploration of celebrity and violence. Nothing deters him from his fiercely protected dream of superstardom, not even the doctors who warn him of the permanent damage he causes to himself with his quest.
The film received lots of good reviews, and Searchlight Pictures had originally intended to release the film in cinemas in December 2023.
However, once Jonathan Majors was arrested and charged with assault and harassment, the movie was pulled from the release schedule while the trial was ongoing. In December 2023, Jonathan Majors was found guilty and is set to be sentenced next month, where he could be put into prison.
According to a recent report by the Hollywood Reporter, Searchlight Pictures still has the release of “Magazine Dreams” on hold, but a release is looking unlikely.
Officially, Searchlight Pictures hasn’t said anything about the film’s release, but sources indicate that the film is unlikely to be released in cinemas, nor will it be released directly onto Disney’s streaming services like the more adult-skewing Hulu or internationally as a Star Original on Disney+, due to the marketing of the film being problematic, since the theme of the film includes violence.
It’s believed that Searchlight Pictures may return “Magazine Dreams” to the filmmakers so they can try to sell the movie to another distributor. So it still could see the light of day, though it’s down to if another studio or company is willing to take that risk.
Disney has been trying to avoid unnecessary negative publicity, and releasing this film either in cinemas or on their streaming service is probably not worth it.
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