According to The Hollywood Reporter, Oliver Stone’s new biopic Snowden has been bumped from its Christmas Day release until some time in 2016. The film stars Joseph Gordon-Levitt as the titular NSA contractor who revealed classified documents to journalists who in turn tipped off several news outlets, violating the Espionage Act. The film also stars Shailene Woodley, Nicolas Cage, Zachary Quinto, and Melissa Leo.
Sources told THR that the reason for the delay is that the film won’t be finished in time, allowing Snowden to duck out of contention with several other major releases, but also making the film ineligible for the 2016 Academy Awards. Wide releases on December 25 include Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Road Chip, Concussion, Daddy’s Home, Joy, and Point Break, in addition to Star Wars: The Force Awakens, which will only be a week old by then. Limited releases include The Hateful Eight and The Revenant.
At least the Gordon-Levitt-starring The Walk is hitting theaters September 30, which, according to early buzz, should keep the actor in the Oscar race even with his Snowden portrayal missing from the lineup. Of course, if you’re too impatient to wait on either film, you could always watch their documentary counterparts Citizenfour and Man On Wire. In fact, both documentaries are so good that, upon finishing them, you might consider expanded retellings with swooping camera work and dramatic close-ups to be somewhat extraneous.