While we don't want to be that guy, necessarily, there are some films that start to look like disasters from miles away. No one sets out to make a bad picture, but sometimes fate conspires in the worst possible way, and a pile up of misfortune leads to something that, even months before release, is clearly fated for horrible reviews, worse box office and a quick trip to the bargain bin. Think "The Stepford Wives," "Bewitched," "The Invasion," or even films that Nicole Kidman wasn't in, like "Jonah Hex," "Bonfire of the Vanities," or, most recently "Mars Needs Moms" -- films reshot, recut and delayed until they made even less sense than they did before.
All the signs are present for another one in "Dream House," the latest from director Jim Sheridan ("In America"). It's got a high-caliber cast in Daniel Craig, Rachel Weisz and Naomi Watts, but it also has a long-delayed release date (it slipped from this February to September), substantial reshoots, and an old-fashioned scandalous on-set romance, not to mention that the film is two months from release and hasn't yet started off its marketing campaign in any substantial way. Well, sort of: Recent Movie Posters have a one-sheet for the film, and it doesn't exactly give us more faith in the movie.
Using an image seemingly taken from the back of a spoon, and focusing on the old favorite of the psychological thriller genre, the haunted doorknob, we're not sure we can imagine anyone who'd look at the one-sheet and go: "I'd like to see that movie." The only plus point is that it may be early or unofficial artwork: it derives from a Russian site, and the credit block is lifted from another film, so hopefully the final product will be somewhat more successful.
Weisz has another long-delayed film on the way, the drama "The Whistleblower," which first debuted at the Toronto International Film Festival last year, a based-in-fact tale in which she plays a U.N. operative who discovers evidence of a conspiracy amongst corrupt colleagues involving sex-trafficking in Bosnia. Weisz picked up typically strong reviews, the film slightly less so, and even if the poster, which comes from Movieline, is firmly generic, it's still a step-up from "Dream House," mainly because it's got Vanessa Redgrave and David Strathairn on it, and that's rarely a bad thing.
Finally, moody actioner "Killer Elite" gets a moody black & white poster at I Watch Stuff, undermined, as everything about the film has been so far, by Clive Owen's hilarious mustache, seemingly an attempt to hammer home the film's 80s action-movie credentials by summoning up the spirit of Vernon Wells in "Commando." That film hits on September 23rd, with "The Whistleblower" coming first, on August 5th, and "Dream House" on September 30th.