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Earlier today, we ran a list of 10 careers that took a hit in 2014, and it was a list filled with some of your favorite actors who just couldn't pull it together in the past year. Yet after learning the final fate of Ryan Gosling's directorial debut, Lost River, we're inclined to say that we might have put old Baby Goose on the list as well, seeing as this directorial effort was his only film lined up for 2014. To add insult to injury to injury, however, is the fact that the actor-cum-director's avant garde fantasy film won't soon be coming to a theater near you.
Variety has the scoop that Lost River's distributor, Warner Bros, will not be seeking to distribute the film theatrically. Instead, the Christina Hendricks-starring film will be heading direct to video and VOD, with an April 2015 release date in mind. Originally titled How To Catch A Monster, the film finds Hendricks' protagonist in a quest to find her son in some sort of alternate universe. While no official reasoning was given as to why the studio will be skipping of a theatrical run for Lost River, one only needs to look back to when the film opened at the Cannes Film Festival this past May to find cause.
While Lost River started out with a lot of notice and anticipation, thanks to its rising star of a director, it eventually became a pariah of the festival that only managed to garner some praise from some like-minded individuals such as Nicolas Winding Refn. This doesn't exactly scream "tentpole," or apparently even "limited arthouse release" for that matter. Given Ryan Gosling's talent level as an actor, it's a shame that the film didn't turn out better and/or get a better critical response. That being said, the Lost River trailer doesn't exactly inspire a ton of confidence in it as a feature.
Thanks to a good deal of public sensation, Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg's The Interview earned quite a bit of notoriety for its On-Demand release platform, so it isn't outside the realm of possibility that Lost River could replicate some degree of the comedy's success. Maybe Ryan Gosling's name and the curiosity that comes with negative reviews could motivate Warner Bros to release "the film that they don't want you to see" into a limited capacity screening tour, possibly with a Q&A from the director himself. Then again, considering how 2014 has been a year of varied success with Warner Bros, it's probably better if Lost River just maintains its current course in hopes that a cult following may soon appear.
Lost River will find its way on home video and on demand in April 2015.