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Lionsgate Buys Gerard Butler-Gary Oldman Thriller ‘Hunter Killer’ for October Release

Lionsgate has bought the action-thriller “Hunter Killer,” starring Gerard Butler, Gary Oldman, Michael Nyqvist, and Common, and given it an Oct. 26 release date.

The film is directed by Donovan Marsh from a script by Arne Schmidt and Jamie Moss from the 2012 novel “Firing Point,” by Don Keith and George Wallace. The story is about an untested American submarine captain who teams with Navy SEALs to rescue the Russian president, who has been kidnapped by a rogue general.

The film has had a quirky journey to the big screen. “Hunter Killer,” produced by Neal Moritz, was originally developed at Relativity Media in 2015 with CEO Ryan Kavanaugh on board to produce  — before Relativity filed for bankruptcy protection.

“Hunter Killer” became the object of a fierce dispute during Relativity’s bankruptcy. Moritz and others associated with the film sued, saying that Relativity had fraudulently induced them into a deal to distribute the film, though they knew their financially fragile company was “nothing more than a house of cards.” Relativity rejected the allegations as “baseless and patently false” but the two sides eventually settled.

Millennium subsequently took the project over from Relativity and the film was shot in London during the summer of 2016. Millennium sold off the North American rights to Lionsgate, which made the dating announcement on Friday.

“Hunter Killer” is the second title to land on Oct. 26. Paramount Pictures has dated its World War II horror film “Overlord” for release on the pre-Halloween weekend. The film is set in 1944, when American paratroopers shot down over Normandy in the midst of the D-Day invasion discover that the Nazis are using supernatural forces.

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