Low budget sci-fi and horror has become increasingly successful in recent years, managing to make substantial profits with relatively small investments. This is particularly true of the found-footage format, which has spawned hits like Chronicle and the lucrative Paranormal Activity franchise. James Wan’s low-budget, R-rated horror film The Conjuring was released right in the middle of last year’s busy summer release schedule and stood its ground, eventually taking in over $318 million at the worldwide box office.
One of the next movies to make an effort at reproducing the low-budget, big-profit model is Welcome to Yesterday, a found-footage movie about a group of teens who discover a way to travel through time and – in true Chronicle fashion – immediately use the ability for all the immature teenage pranks they can think of. The script was penned by Andrew Stark and Jason Pagan (Paranormal Activity 5) and was snapped up almost immediately by Paramount Pictures and Michael Bay’s production company, Platinum Dunes.
Welcome to Yesterday is the feature directorial debut of Dean Israelite and the trailer came out late last year ahead of its planned winter release date. Those who are in possession of a working time travel machine may need to use it if they want to see this film any time soon, however. THR reports that Welcome to Yesterday, which was originally supposed to arrive in theaters on February 28, has now been postponed. No new date has been set, but Paramount is reportedly eyeing a summer or fall release.
Delays can sometimes be a bad sign, but in the case of Welcome to Yesterday this seems more like a vote of confidence from the studio. February is one of the weakest months for box office releases and rescheduling for later in the year indicates that Paramount believes Welcome to Yesterday has what it takes to be a summer or fall hit.
The summer release schedule is already a little less competitive than it was, due to Fast and Furious 7 being delayed until 2015. Shortly afterwards, the weekend date that it had absented was filled by Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, which was moved forward a week from its original release date
There’s definitely a place for low-budget sci-fi fare like Welcome to Yesterday in between blockbusters like Transformers : Age of Extinction and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, but the delay means that we’ve got a good few more months to wait before finding out whether it has what it takes to become this year’s Chronicle.