Fox has given its teen drama “The Hate U Give” an awards-season release of Oct. 19.
The release date news comes after the studio in April cast “Riverdale” star K.J. Apa to replace Kian Lawley, who was dropped two months earlier from the project over videos that surfaced in which he uttered racist slurs.
Lawley was set to play the boyfriend of the film’s star, Amandla Stenberg, in the movie based on Angela Thomas’ bestselling novel of the same name, which centers on race and police brutality. He was fired from the project on Feb. 5 and apologized at the time.
The role of the boyfriend is a key component of “The Hate U Give,” which also stars Regina Hall, Russell Hornsby, Algee Smith, Lamar Johnson, and Common. Stenberg plays a 16-year-old girl named Starr who grew up in a poverty-stricken area, but now attends a suburban prep school. After she witnesses a police officer shoot her unarmed best friend, she’s torn between her two very different worlds as she tries to speak her truth.
Bob Teitel and Marty Bowen are producing. George Tillman Jr. is directing from Audrey Wells’ script.
“The Hate U Give” is the fifth title set for Oct. 19 along with Universal’s updated “Halloween,” Warner Bros.’ live-action “Mowgli,” Aviron’s thriller “Serenity,” and Annapurna’s “Where’d You Go, Bernadette?”