The Hunt, Blumhouse Productions’ controversial film, was originally scheduled to premiere in September 2019. Finally, it makes its debut in theaters today.
In August of last year, shortly after trailers for The Hunt started to run, a gunman shot 22 people at a Walmart in El Paso, Texas. The very next day, nine people were killed by another gunman in Dayton, and Universal Pictures decided to pull the film from its immediate schedule.
Loosely based on Richard Connell’s short story The Most Dangerous Game, The Hunt and its violent trailer seemed to hit the “too soon” button pretty hard. Even President Trump seemed to be alluding to the production when he said, “The movie coming out is made in order to inflame and cause chaos. They create their own violence, and then try to blame others.” Though he never mentioned “the movie” by name, it was pretty clear he was talking about The Hunt.
The film’s website proclaims that “The most talked about movie of the year is one that no one’s actually seen,” and advance reviews seem to indicate that, despite its violence, The Hunt is actually more or less satire.
Obviously, this is not the first time that violence and entertainment have collided in this fashion. After 9/11, several films went so far as to digitally remove images of the World Trade Center, and premieres were postponed until the shock had worn off somewhat. But, 1428 Elm specializes in horror, so we are going to discuss two different horror television series that had to scramble in order to avoid accusations of capitalizing on tragedy.