“We woke up this morning and the movie was gone,” director Adam Green told Entertainment Weekly on Monday. “I’m bewildered and confused.”
Only a few days after the release of Hatchet II, AMC theaters pulled the film and issued a statement saying: “At AMC theaters, we review all films in all of our theatres every week and then make our business decisions based on their performance.”
Hatchet II opened at #50 at the box office this weekend with $52,604, which is an average of $774 on 68 total screens, which director Green admits isn’t great, but doesn’t believe is reason enough to stop playing the movie. “It’s an unrated cult movie that didn’t have commercials and all those other things,” he says. “I don’t see them pulling a movie on Sunday because it doesn’t look like the box office is going to blow people away.”
This film has been surrounded by controversy since the Motion Pictures Association of America refused to give the film an R rating, even after Green agreed to cut 2 minutes of the film. At that point Green thought they’d just go straight to video, but AMC agreed to play it unrated. Green has had issues with the MPAA in the past when dealing with the original Hatchet, so this time around he hoped to teach them a lesson.
”[The MPAA] are a very big and powerful — even though they’re evil — organization,” he says. “But if people support this, and we make enough noise at the box office, it will change the game for the genre. That’s when it’ll be a win. It’s up to the fans now to support this, so it isn’t all in vain, and we can start to change the system. I’m really hoping for a [box office] miracle.”
Even though AMC decided against playing the film Green insists to Entertainment Weekly that he hasn’t lost hope. “The good thing is that the biggest audience for this movie—because it was for the first one—is going to with on demand and DVD,” he says. “I know that [Hatchet 2 distribution company] Dark Skies, in light of it being pulled prematurely, is going to do everything they can to get it to the fans as fast as they can. And that’s exciting. I don’t really make hardcore movies. I’m doing a kids movie next! Hopefully, this is the last time I’m ever even going to deal with something like this.”