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Last Updated:  Friday, 21 March, 2003, 10:09 GMT
War delays Meg Ryan film
Meg Ryan
Meg Ryan plays boxing promoter Jackie Kallan
Meg Ryan's latest movie has been pulled over fears of the effect the war in Iraq will have on its popularity.

Paramount Pictures has delayed the release of Against the Ropes, based on the true story of woman boxing manager, indefinitely.

It was due for release on 25 April.

Because of the continuing intensive war coverage in the US, the studio was uncertain about buying advertising between TV shows which could be cancelled.

"The issue is the advertising gets pre-empted, and you end up losing your message," said a Paramount spokeswoman.

There are also worries that people will be so keen to keep up with the latest developments in the war on TV that they will not go to the cinema.

But some experts are suggesting the war will not have too much of an adverse effect and that any downturn this weekend could be down to the selection of films on offer.

The only big release of the week is an adaptation of the Stephen King novel Dreamcatcher, starring Morgan Freeman.

The same week last year saw the introduction of blockbusters Blade II and Ice Age.

Knee-jerk

"If this weekend is down versus last year, it would be a knee-jerk reaction to say this is because of the war," said Paul Dergarabedian, president of US box office tracker Exhibitor Relations.

Following the terrorist attacks of 11 September Hollywood studios were predicting a sharp decline in cinema-goers.

But quite the opposite happened as people appeared to want a break from the real-life tragedy on their TV screens for the escapism of the movies.

  • Husband-and-wife opera stars Angela Gheorghiu and tenor Roberto Alagna have cancelled their final two performances of Faust at the Metropolitan Opera in New York because of the war.

    The singers left the US to return to France to be with their children over "war concerns and terrorism concerns".




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