After Valkyrie's release date was pushed back for a second time this month, some skeptics on the blogosphere began to worry that the film — which stars popular actor Tom Cruise as a one-eyed Nazi who bungles an assassination attempt on Hitler — might not be the box-office blockbuster that we all, quite naturally, had it pegged for. In this morning's Times, United Artists chief Paula Wagner sets the record straight: "Anybody trying to dismiss us or write us off doesn't understand the business," she says. "Nothing is going to stop us."
According to UA executives, Valkyrie's delays — first from its planned opening in June, then again from a release in October during Oscar season — were simply a strategic move to maximize profits (it's currently due next February, a month in which $100 million dramas about infighting among Nazis are known to perform well), and the much-discussed reshoots were necessary only after a film reel got damaged in a lab accident, something we're sure probably happens all the time. The Times goes on to compare Valkyrie to other movies which triumphed over negative buzz, namely Titanic and Bram Stoker's Dracula (neither featured a Nazi as its protagonist, but still). So, really, you probably shouldn't be surprised when United Artists rolls out plans for a sequel.