If Beale Street Could Talk is shifting months.
Barry Jenkins latest film, set at Annapurna, will be debuting December 14 in New York and Los Angeles and expanding December 25.
It was previously set to debut November 30 in New York, December 7 in Los Angeles and further expansion later.
IndieWire says, “According to Erik Lomis, distribution president at Annapurna, the change was simple cause and effect. When the company decided that expansion should begin Christmas Day, that made December 14 a logical opening date. Earlier expansion would be challenging, since the period leading up to the holiday is not a strong one for adult-audience films.”
There is a strategic plan for expansion as the film heads into awards season. “On December 25, Annapurna plans to add around 120 theaters, both specialized and in African-American neighborhoods, in the top 25 to 30 markets. Then it will add screens in stages, starting January 4, with up to 600 the first week in the top 75 markets. Increases will follow on the next two weekends, with the aim of 1,500 theaters.”
The news was initially reported by Showbiz 411 over the weekend.
Jenkins responded on Twitter to the reports that the film had been pushed back.
Semantics: not pushed, lovingly Chicago Steppin to December 14th so the folks who see themselves in this film don’t have to wait a whole month after everyone else to see this James Baldwin film ????????
— Barry Jenkins (@BarryJenkins) November 5, 2018
If Beale Street Could Talk initially debuted at the Toronto International Film Festival in December.