The Reason Jason Statham Quit Kevin Hart’s New Movie

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The erstwhile Transporter is delivering himself from studio conflict. Jason Statham has made waves by quitting a film just weeks before production was to begin according to Deadline, leaving the studio in the wind to replace him in a co-starring role opposite Kevin Hart.

The movie, entitled The Man From Toronto, is pitched as an odd-couple action comedy. Statham, the (now former) titular man from Toronto, is a globally-famous assassin who suffers a case of mistaken identity with Kevin Hart’s slacker character, necessitating a team-up to defeat an unspecified common enemy.

Statham’s departure is reportedly due to a disagreement with the studio over plans for the film’s eventual rating.

No movie has a rating until the MPAA sees a screening during the final editing phase, well after production has wrapped, but studios make plans well ahead of time to aim for a certain rating based on the MPAA’s general standards.

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In this case, the studio was operating on the assumption of a PG-13 rating, while Statham was lobbying to stretch the content of the film towards an R. He appears to have lost that fight, and in doing so, decided to take the nuclear option and drop out of the film.

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Why would a rating matter so much, and what does this mean for Statham’s career going forward?

 

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