Warner Bros. has set a new August release date for The Kitchen, which is now officially rated R. An adaptation of the Vertigo comic books, The Kitchen stars Melissa McCarthy, Tiffany Haddish, and Elisabeth Moss as a trio of mob wives who take over the Irish mafia after their husbands are arrested by the FBI. The film marks the writing-directing debut for Andrea Berloff, an Oscar-nominated screenwriter whose previous work includes true story dramas like World Trade Center and Straight Outta Compton, in addition to well-received genre fare like the Mel Gibson action-drama Blood Father.
Between Berloff's experience writing violent dramas, McCarthy and Haddish stepping far away from their comedy roots, and the way the comics (written by Ollie Masters and illustrated by Ming Doyle) explore themes about gender through a gritty story set in Hell's Kitchen circa the 1970s, there's a lot that's intriguing about The Kitchen movie adaptation from the get-go. Fans of the source material have been anticipating the movie's trailer for that very reason, following the release of the first-look cast photo last October. Now, it appears that the film's marketing will be starting up sooner than previously expected.
Deadline is reporting that The Kitchen's release date has been moved up from September 20 to August 9 this year. The WB/New Line Cinema production has also received an official R rating for "violence, language throughout and some sexual content" from the MPAA.
McCarthy, Haddish, and Moss are joined by an equally impressive supporting cast in The Kitchen, including Common, Domhnall Gleeson, Margo Martindale, Brian d'Arcy James, and James Badge Dale. The film, like Todd Phillips' Joker, is one of the few comic book movies hitting theaters in 2019 that doesn't feature superheroes and aims to be more of a grounded crime drama in the vein of classic Martin Scorsese works like Mean Streets and Goodfellas. Thanks to its new August date, The Kitchen will also be the rare high-profile period drama among this year's crop of summer blockbusters, next to Quentin Tarantino's 1969-set project Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. It promises to be a pretty unique offering, all things considered.
WB and New Line seem confident about The Kitchen's prospects, having now scheduled the film to premiere over a fairly busy weekend in August rather than late September. The movie will open against Disney's Artemis Fowl and Lionsgate's Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark, in addition to Hereditary director Ari Aster's new horror film Midsommar. As far as direct competition goes, however, The Kitchen will only really need to worry about Richard Linklater's Where'd You Go, Bernadette, which is also targeting adult moviegoers. Still, we wouldn't advise betting against the mob wives of Hell's Kitchen in this particular fight.