Warner Brothers has a new release date for The Great Gatsby: May 10th, 2013. As I anticipate the new film from Baz Lurhman, starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Carrie Mulligan, I feel a sense of dread when I realize that the release date is the second weekend in May. Over the years I’ve noticed that this is a time frame in which movies bomb at the box office and the worst of the high profile movies of the summer movie season are released. If you audit the product, one could easily consider the second weekend of May to be a dumping ground for failed blockbusters. I even posted about this date on TMB with the dismal showing for the Johnny Depp/Tim Burton horror comedy “Dark Shadows” .
Other movies Warner Brothers opened around this release date, besides ‘Dark Shadows’, include “Battlefield Earth,” the “Poseidon” remake, and “Speed Racer” just to name a few and I get the impression that this weekend seems to be a vote of no confidence from the studio. Likewise, when Warner Brothers moved ‘The Great Gatsby’ to that same weekend, I grew very anxious and concerned. Moving a film from the Oscar/Holiday season to this date is, to say the least, problematic and worrisome. Taking it away from audiences during the Holidays says a lot without saying anything at all. Although the studio still has “Argo” and “The Dark Knight Rises” to campaign for awards, I’m still highly suspect about pulling it for its coveted Christmas release date but I genuinely hope ‘The Great Gatsby’ somehow bucks the trend of films that bomb during the second weekend in May. I want to be very wrong about by feelings of suspicion and if so, it will join the new “Star Trek” reboot as one of the few films not to bomb during this weekend. So far, it is not looking good for the ambitious looking, retelling of a classic film.