Happy Death Day 2U was originally scheduled to hit theaters on February 14, making it the perfect counter-programming for Valentine’s Day weekend. Unfortunately, that date also marks the one-year anniversary of the Parkland shooting. As reported by Entertainment Weekly, Universal has decided to move the release date of its sequel to last year’s slasher flick up by one day to February 13, in response to a plea from one of the victim’s parents.
Fred Guttenberg’s daughter Jaime was one of 17 people killed when a gunman opened fire on Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida on February 14, 2018. In a tweet posted this week, Guttenberg asked Universal to “please reconsider” releasing Happy Death Day 2U on the anniversary of the school shooting:
Universal announced the release date change in an official statement, in which it was also revealed that the studio will not screen the horror sequel in Parkland and surrounding areas in Florida:
When Universal Pictures became aware last week that the one-year anniversary of the tragic events in Parkland, Florida fell on the Happy Death Day 2U release date, the studio spoke with victim advocates and immediately began the process of changing the release date of the film. Following discussions with its partners in exhibition, Universal will move the North American release date to February 13. Additionally, the studio has decided not to show the film in Parkland and the surrounding areas. Outdoor, digital and in-theatre marketing for the film will be suspended in that market. The studio understands the importance of memorializing the February 14 date as an opportunity to continue to allow the Parkland community to heal.