It was reported this week that John Travolta’s film ‘Gotti‘ was dropped by Lionsgate just 10 days before its scheduled release on December 15. Entertainment Weekly reported that the studio sold the movie back to its production company. There was no reason given for the shocking move.
For those who don’t know, Gotti was directed by Entourage actor Kevin Connolly and it stars Travolta and his real-life wife Kelly Preston.
After the Lionsgate news was announced, Travolta fired back against the media, claiming they didn’t have the full story. He claims he was underwhelmed by the studio’s tiny release plan, so he searched for a financier to buy Lionsgate out of the equation. He allegedly found one in Edward Walson, a Broadway producer.
“Lionsgate was planning on a minimal release and I did an investigation into people who might have the interest and financial wherewithal to better release it. Ed is a fan of mine and of the Gotti story, and really wanted to see the movie. I invited his group, they saw it and bought it. That is the simple explanation for this. It wasn’t dropped. It wasn’t easy to get Lionsgate to give it up. They said no, twice, and I literally begged them to reconsider and they finally and generously let it go. We signed this deal about three weeks ago, to purchase back the film from Lionsgate.”
Hmmm. I know he claims Lionsgate didn’t want to give it up, but one has to wonder if the film is truly that great, why would they even consider giving it up? Something doesn’t seem right.
According to the reports, Travolta and Walson are close to landing a deal with a “significant distributor.” They also plan to submit to Cannes as an official submission.