Lionsgate and Roadside Attractions are optimistic about the summer box office, and the studios set a theatrical release date for the espionage drama “The Courier.” The Cold War drama stars Academy Award nominee Benedict Cumberbatch, and the movie will hit theaters on August 28, 2020. The film was picked up at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival, where it screened as “IRONBARK.”
The official description reads, “The Courier is the true story of an unassuming British businessman Greville Wynne (Cumberbatch)
recruited into one of the greatest international conflicts in history. At the behest of the UK’s MI-6 and a CIA operative (Rachel Brosnahan), he forms a covert, dangerous partnership with Soviet officer Oleg Penkovsky (Merab Ninidze) in an effort to provide crucial intelligence needed to prevent a nuclear confrontation and defuse the Cuban Missile Crisis.”
“Theaters have indicated gradual openings this summer, with health and safety guiding the way. If everything proceeds favorably, we feel the true spy thriller The Courier, with a must see performance by Benedict Cumberbatch, is just the type of film that will have audiences excited to return to their local cinemas in late August,” said Roadside co-presidents Howard Cohen and Eric d’Arbeloff.
Dominic Cooke directed the movie, working from a script by Tom O’Connor. Adam Ackland, Ben Browning, Ben Pugh, and Rory Aitken served as producers on the project, with Leah Clarke, Benedict Cumberbatch, Ashley Fox, Glen Basner, Alison Cohen, Milan Popelka, Dominic Cooke, Tom O’Connor, and Josh Varney serving as executive producers.
Other studios have been less optimistic about the summer box office, and most major releases have been delayed until 2021, with some titles pushed back to 2022. Films with larger budgets, like “Fast and Furious 9” which cost upwards of $250M to produce, are waiting until the Spring of 2021 before risking a theatrical release. Sony Pictures pushed “No Time to Die,” the next James Bond film in the franchise, to November 2020 with hopes that the current health crisis will be under control by the fall.
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