Disney wasn’t planning to give director Guillermo del Toro’s new film Nightmare Alley a wide release right away. When they scheduled the film for a December 3rd release, the idea was that it would start out in a limited number of theatres and then roll out to more over the holiday season. Now that plan has changed: Disney has moved Nightmare Alley to December 17th and will be giving it a wide release on opening weekend.
As pointed out by the folks at Screen Rant, this shift in release strategy shows that Disney has a lot of faith in Nightmare Alley. Unfortunately, this release date move also puts it directly up against some tough competition. December 17th also happens to be the day Sony will be releasing Spider-Man: No Way Home.
Based on a novel by William Lindsay Gresham (which was previously turned into a movie back in 1947), Nightmare Alley is a noir thriller set in
a world of carnival hustlers and con men, telling the story of a mentalist who teams with a psychologist in order to swindle the rich.
Del Toro put together a hell of a cast for this movie. The line-up includes Bradley Cooper, Cate Blanchett, Willem Dafoe, Mary Steenburgen, Rooney Mara, Ron Perlman, Toni Collette, Holt McCallany, David Strathairn, Clifton Collins Jr., Tim Blake Nelson, Jim Beaver, David Hewlett, and Richard Jenkins.
Copies of Gresham’s novel can be purchased at THIS LINK. Here’s the description:
Nightmare Alley begins with an extraordinary description of a carnival-show geek—alcoholic and abject and the object of the voyeuristic crowd’s gleeful disgust and derision—going about his work at a county fair. Young Stan Carlisle is working as a carny, and he wonders how a man could fall so low. There’s no way in hell, he vows, that anything like that will ever happen to him.
And since Stan is clever and ambitious and not without a useful streak of ruthlessness, soon enough he’s going places. Onstage he plays the mentalist with a cute assistant (before long his harried wife), then he graduates to full-blown spiritualist, catering to the needs of the rich and gullible in their well-upholstered homes. It looks like the world is Stan’s for the taking. At least for now.
The del Toro adaptation has been rated R for “strong/bloody violence, some sexual content, nudity and language.”
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