"Coming soon to a theater near you" means different things to Tri-Star and the creative folk behind "Extreme Prejudice."
According to a Tri-Star spokesman, the $22 million action-adventure (a Texas Ranger vs. drug trafficking in a border town) starring Nick Nolte and Powers Boothe is the company's Christmas movie . . . which turned out to be a shocker to director Walter Hill and co-producers Andy Vajna and Mario Kassar.
Tri-Star said, "It's definitely our Christmas film." Hill told us it will open in April. Vajna and Kassar maintain that Tri-Star will set a release date, but added, "There is no delivery date contractually."
Tri-Star has informed exhibitors to "hold" theaters for "Extreme Prejudice" this holiday season. But said one irritated exhibitor, "Can't any film executive in Hollywood do their job and stay on top of these films in production? Tri-Star doesn't seem to have any product to replace 'Prejudice' if the film's not ready. If Tri-Star doesn't come up with a Christmas film, they will be the fourth major (following Columbia, Cannon and MGM) to stiff the exhibitors during the holiday season.
"Tri-Star just bought the United Artists Theater Circuit. Not having a Christmas movie is a terrible way to say happy holidays to your new partner."