Despite an impressive opening weekend, nearly 200 theaters dropped the new film “Gosnell” before it rolled into its second weekend at the box office.
And what made the theater loss even stranger? “Gosnell” was a top-10 performer in a handful of those multiplexes.
Dean Cain — who stars as one of the real-life detectives who pursued Dr. Gosnell — told LifeZette in an email about the treatment of his film by theaters, “I have never experienced anything like this before, but perhaps it’s a sign of the times. So many folks have become so polarized these days here in the United States that they instantly demonize anyone with whom they have any disagreement. It happens on both sides, and I find it ridiculous.”
The actor continued, “I contend that there are 10 percent on the far Right, and 10 percent on the far Left, and they are responsible for 90 percent of the noise. The remaining 80 percent of us live somewhere in the middle, and we should be promoting dialogue and understanding, not division and identity politics.”
Troubling reports have emerged of some theaters claiming the movie was sold out when it actually wasn’t, or that some theaters simply didn’t advertise that it was even playing, according to producer Phelim McAleer. It really shouldn’t be all that surprising — since the road to getting “Gosnell” made and into theaters was such an uphill battle.
The film — which tells the story of the trial of Kermit Gosnell, a Philadelphia abortion doctor convicted on three counts of first-degree murder in 2013 — raised its $2.4 million budget through the crowdfunding site Indiegogo and spent years trying to find distributors.
So why doesn’t mainstream Hollywood approve of the movie? Because the story it tells could paint abortion in a negative light for some viewers. It’s the same reason the mainstream media largely ignored the original Gosnell case.
Of the current potential bias against “Gosnell” in theaters, producer Ann McElhinney recently told LifeZette, “This movie proves that in Hollywood, ideology is more important than money. It’s amazing. This movie was becoming a hit number nine in the box office this week and on a fraction of the screens of the big studio movies. They don’t want the truth out there, and they’ll do anything, including throw away money, to stop us [from] telling this shocking true story.”
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Cain, the “Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman” star, also says it’s the subject matter of his new movie that is making some work so aggressively to suppress it.
“With ‘Gosnell,’ it’s simple. People don’t want to discuss abortion,” he told LifeZette. “It’s a dirty word, and they would rather sweep it under the rug, pretending that horrors like what took place in Gosnell’s clinic are not happening here in the United States. It doesn’t fit the narrative, and the ‘powers that be’ — i.e. the mainstream media — don’t want people to see the film.”
Despite those ‘powers that be’ that are working against it, “Gosnell” has still topped $2 million. The numbers for its second weekend haven’t even been fully tallied yet.
On Rotten Tomatoes, it has 99 percent positive ratings from over 1,000 user reviews.
Mainstream media reviewers have mostly ignored the film — which also features and was directed by “Justified” and “Shape of Water” star Nick Searcy — but it still has a “fresh” 60 percent approval rating from 10 critic reviews.
Watch the trailer for “Gosnell” (rated PG-13) below and find theaters playing the movie.