Last November saw the release of Illumination’s The Grinch, arriving 61 years after Dr. Seuss’ How The Grinch Stole Christmas! was originally published and 18 years after the live action movie starring Jim Carrey hit theaters. However, originally the plan was for the The Grinch to come out on November 10, 2017, but in mid-2016, it was pushed back to its final 2018 release date. When I asked co-director Scott Mosier if there was any specific reason why The Grinch was delayed, he attributed it needing a little extra time to ensure that the movie was the best it could be. He explained:
I recently had the opportunity to chat with Scott Mosier over the phone ahead of The Grinch’s release on Blu-ray and DVD, and when the conversation turned to The Grinch’s year-long delay, he made it clear that pushing the movie back was necessary. Fortunately for Mosier and his team, producer and Illumination CEO Chris Meledandri was all for having The Grinch come out in 2018 instead if it resulted in a better product.
Anyone who follows movie news regularly knows that release dates aren’t cemented once they’re announced. There are various factors that can lead to a studio postponing a movie (or occasionally even being moved up the calendar), and as Scott Mosier noted, animated projects in particular deal with delays often. But along with the usual time-consuming animation process, Mosier also mentioned that because The Grinch is a Seussian-creation, that meant extra attention was required for the movie to look unique. As Mosier, who co-directed The Grinch with Yarrow Cheney, put it:
For this adaptation of Dr. Seuss’ classic Christmas tale, Benedict Cumberbatch brought the green-furred curmudgeon to life, and The Grinch’s other voices included Cameron Seely, Rashida Jones, Kenan Thompson, Angela Lansbury and Pharrell Williams. It is now the second highest-grossing Christmas themed movie of all time with its over $508 million haul worldwide, trailing only behind Home Alone.