Trump tweeted Friday: “Liberal Hollywood is Racist at the highest level, and with great Anger and Hate! They like to call themselves ‘Elite,’ but they are not Elite. In fact, it is often the people that they so strongly oppose that are actually the Elite. The movie coming out is made in order to inflame and cause chaos. They create their own violence, and then try to blame others. They are the true Racists, and are very bad for our Country!”
In a statement on Saturday, Universal said it had decided to take the further step of cancelling the film’s Sept. 27 release.
A spokesperson for Universal said: “While Universal Pictures had already paused the marketing campaign for The Hunt, after thoughtful consideration, the studio has decided to cancel our plans to release the film. We stand by our filmmakers and will continue to distribute films in partnership with bold and visionary creators, like those associated with this satirical social thriller, but we understand that now is not the right time to release this film.”
Left open was the possibility that the movie could be released in theatres or on a streaming service at a later date.
The move to cancel the film came several days after the studio suspended the ad campaign for the movie, a gory, R-rated thriller that tells a tale of liberal “elites” hunting people in red states for sport.
The studio paused the ad campaign in the middle of last week in light of the tragic mass shootings in Texas, Ohio and California.
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A number of angry viewers took to social media to chastise the film companies for their timing in releasing the “insensitive” content.
As a result of the controversy, Universal pulled the latest trailer from all platforms, leaving only the original in its place alongside a happy-go-lucky teaser.
—With files from the Associated Press and Adam Wallis