Lionsgate has dropped its John Gotti biopic starring John Travolta just 10 days before the movie’s scheduled release date.
According to several news outlets, Lionsgate pulled the plug on the movie on Tuesday. Lionsgate reportedly sold Gotti back to its production company Emmett/Furla/Oasis, and they are expected to be seeking new distribution.
However, the movie will probably not find a new distributor in time before the slated release date of December 15th and will most likely get pushed back to 2018. Lionsgate has not given any explanation for the sale, which took place on Tuesday.
The crime drama covered the life of the infamous leader of the Gambino crime family and was directed by Entourage’s Kevin Connolly. It also stars Travolta’s wife Kelly Preston who play’s the crime boss’s wife, Victoria Gotti.
Filming started in July 2016 and had been hit with several delays and false starts. Some other actors have been connected to the project throughout its development including Al Pacino, Lindsay Lohan, and Anthony Hopkins.
Talking to the Entertainment Weekly about the movie, Connolly said previously: “There are nice cars and fancy suits in the movie, but we’re also showing where all that eventually leads, HBO made a Gotti movie in 1996, but his death, which was horrible, hasn’t been covered too much. That’s a different angle that we’re going to explore.”
Mafia leader Gotti was brought to trial multiple times throughout the 1980s, only to be acquitted. Travolta, 63, plays Gotti in numerous stages of his life, including when he finally went to prison in 1992. Gotta would die of throat cancer, while still incarcerated in 2002.
Gotti’s son, John Gotti Jr., claims in his self-published memoir detailing what it was like to grow up like John Gotti’s son, that the Feds let his father die choking on his vomit and blood as his bones rotted around his neck from cancer after spending the decade ‘in ‘the hole’.