EXCLUSIVE: The Book of Clarence, the Legendary and Jay Z-produced adventure-comedy, won’t be released in UK cinemas this week as planned.
The biblical epic has quietly dropped off the UK release schedule at the eleventh hour after initially being lined up for a January 19 release by Sony. UK exhibitors were set for a January 19 launch — the film has been listed on multiple cinema sites as opening this week — and marketing materials were deployed with a January 19 listing.
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We understand a March release is now more likely. Sony is handling UK distribution, but we understand the decision to push back the release came from Legendary, which produced and financed the film.
News of the calendar switch comes after the pic recently opened stateside, taking just $3M over the 4-day MLK Jr. holiday weekend, giving the film a ninth-place debut on the charts. We hear that a later UK date was always a possibility but it’s unusual for a studio film to reroute at such short notice.
Starring LaKeith Stanfield, David Oyelowo, and Benedict Cumberbatch, The Book of Clarence tells the story of Stanfield’s streetwise but down-on-his-luck Clarence, who is struggling to find a better life for his family while fighting to free himself of debt. Captivated by the power and glory of the rising Messiah and His apostles, he risks everything to carve his path to divine life and ultimately discovers that the redemptive power of belief may be his only way out.
The film’s cast is rounded out by Omar Sy, RJ Cyler, James McAvoy, Anna Diop, Teyana Taylor, Alfre Woodard, Marianne Jean-Baptiste, Caleb McLaughlin, Babs Olusanmokun, Eric Kofi Abrefa, Nicholas Pinnock, Micheal Ward, Chase Dillon, Tom Glynn-Carney and Tom Vaughan-Lawlor.
Samuels produced the film alongside James Lassiter, Tendo Nagenda, and Shawn “Jay-Z” Carter. Garrett Grant is executive producer.
Legendary and Sony had no comment.
Andreas Wiseman contributed to this report.
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