When the first trailer for The Hunt dropped, some parts of the internet lashed out against the kind of movie the footage was seemingly depicting, which even led to Donald Trump chastising it. Audiences weren't the only ones shocked by that first look at the film, as even director Craig Zobel wasn't anticipating the trailer to hint at the type of movie he hadn't actually made. The reaction from viewers was so passionate and unexpected that the film ended up being pulled from its planned September release, with some fans thinking the movie would never see the light of day, though it is confirmed to now be hitting theaters on March 13th.
“I was a little surprised by the first trailer,” Zobel shared with PLAYBOY when addressing the first trailer omitting the satirical nature of the narrative. “The advertising certainly didn’t help us, because it didn’t quite tell the story. People were able to misinterpret things because they didn’t have any information other than what was in the trailer, which was not all of the information, for sure.”
Not only did the reaction to the film result in hate directed at the picture, but also at the director himself.
“There were Twitter accounts that had been open for three days that had nothing but anti–Craig Zobel tweets,” the director confessed. “Still, I absolutely don’t want to change anything, and no one has asked me to. It will be even more interesting when people see it.”
In the film, "12 strangers wake up in a clearing. They don’t know where they are, or how they got there. They don't know they've been chosen… for a very specific purpose… 'The Hunt.' In the shadow of a dark internet conspiracy theory, a bunch of elites gathers for the very first time at a remote Manor House to hunt humans for sport. But the elites’ master plan is about to be derailed because one of the hunted, Crystal (Betty Gilpin, GLOW), knows The Hunters’ game better than they do. She turns the tables on the killers, picking them off, one by one, as she makes her way toward the mysterious woman (two-time Oscar winner Hilary Swank) at the center of it all."
Interestingly, when the film earned a new release date, it embraced the hateful comments lobbied at it for its promotional materials.
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