Should Ben Affleck hault the release of Gone Baby Gone?

Actor is toying with the idea of delaying his directorial debut because of the plot similarities with the case of Madelaine McCann.

Matt Holmes


gone_baby_gone.jpgIf your in the U.K, you won’t be able to avoid the case of Madelaine McCann, the innocent four year old child who went missing on holiday in Portugal in May whilst her parents were having dinner at a restaurant in another part of the hotel. Most recently, Madeleine’s parents have been questioned and become under suspicion as to whether they had something to do with her the girl’s disappearance and possible death.

If your interested in reading more about the case you can click here to see it’s Wiki entry.

Now what has this got to to do with Ben Affleck and his directorial debut Gone Baby Gone? Well here’s the plot of the movie and you might begin to see some similarities…

Based on Dennis Lehane’s novel of the same title, “Gone, Baby, Gone” is a story about a two detectives in search of a 4 year old girl that has been kidnapped after her mother left her alone at their home in Boston.

Here’s Ben Affleck’s take on the situation first, from Digital Spy (via Filmstalker)…

“I’m not up to date on the details and it is not something that has taken off in the United States in the way it has in the UK. It is only when someone said there was this case that was very similar to my film that we looked it up.

We don’t want to release the movie if it is going to touch a nerve or inflame anybody’s sensitivities.”

This is quite similar to something that happened two years ago when V for Vendetta was eyeing a release date in the last months of 2005 but after the terroist attacks on July 5th it was deemed too similar and was too soon to be released in the U.K. The movie was then put back several months and the same looks likely to be the case here.

Now I’m sure Affleck’s a nice guy and everything but when he mentions that he doesn’t want to inflame anyone’s sensitivities, I think the only thing he is thinking about is the box office of his film, and rightfully so. The movie was made well before any of the events that took place in Portugal and is a complete work of fiction from someone elses novel.

If he thinks the movie might suffer at the box office because of McCann’s case (although I don’t think it would personally, if anything it might improve it’s chances with the added publicity) then that’s fine… delay the release… it won’t matter at all for the type of film you have made which can open pretty much anytime. But, don’t do it just to avoid offending anyone – be proud of your film.

Thoughts on this one guys? Too similar a tale to release? Would it offend you if this got screened in the U.K. at the end of the year?