Universal Pictures cancels ‘The Hunt’ movie following U.S. mass shootings

Click to play video 'Movie trailer: The Hunt' Movie trailer: The Hunt
WATCH: 'The Hunt' trailer.

Universal Pictures has cancelled the planned September release of its controversial social satire The Hunt in the wake of recent mass shootings and amid criticism from U.S. President Donald Trump.

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!”

READ MORE: Violent ‘The Hunt’ movie ads pulled following U.S. mass shootings

In a statement on Saturday, Universal said it had decided to take the further step of cancelling the film’s Sept. 27 release.

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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.

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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.

WATCH: The latest on the El Paso shootings

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The violent clip for The Hunt was released following the horrific mass shootings, which took place in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio, last weekend, leaving at least 31 dead.

The Hunt, produced by Jason Blum’s Blumhouse, stars Oscar winner Hilary Swank and Betty Gilpin and is directed by Craig Zobel.

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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.

The Hunt also stars Emma Roberts, Ike Barinholtz and Justin Hartley, among others.

—With files from the Associated Press and Adam Wallis