John Travolta calls movie dumping 'fake news'

Amy Stevenson

John Travolta has slammed reports his latest movie Gotti was shelved at the last minute, labelling the speculation as "fake news'.

On Thursday reports emerged the 63-year-old's upcoming Mafia flick about Gambino family head John Gotti had been pulled 10 days before its release day by distributor Lionsgate.

However Travolta has since rubbished the reports, telling Deadline the movie will still premiere, but will have a wider release than the original one planned after he found new financial backing from film producer Edward Walson.

John Travolta (R) has rubbished claims his upcoming movie about mobster John Gotti (L) has been dumped. Source: Getty

"Unfortunately, the reports were speculation bordering on fake news," Travolta told the outlet. “Lionsgate was planning on a minimal release, and I did an investigation into people who might have the interest and financial wherewithal to better release it.

"Ed is a fan of mine and of the Gotti story and really wanted to see the movie. I invited his group, they saw it and bought it. That is the simple explanation for this," he added.

The Grease star continues, refuting the reports the film was "dropped", and calling the rampant speculation "grossly wrong".

"It wasn’t dropped. It wasn’t easy to get Lionsgate to give it up. They said no, twice, and I literally begged them to reconsider and they finally and generously let it go," Travolta continued.

The actor called the reports
Travolta plays the iconic Mafia boss in the upcoming flick. Source: Lionsgate

"We signed this deal about three weeks ago, to purchase back the film from Lionsgate. Our mistake was we should have said something right then and discussed our plan for the film. We didn’t anticipate this speculation that is so grossly wrong."

Travolta also opened up to the publication about his latest role, one he calls "one of his better performances" and how he approached playing the iconic mobster.

The star found new financial backing for the movie to enable a wide release. Source: Getty

"My style as an actor is to research and observe the behavior of a character, and my goal was to accurately portray him to where you thought you were watching John Gotti, as I tried to do with Robert Shapiro [in last year’s FX series The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story]," he said.

"I learned quite a bit about the family, the mafia and how things worked in that world. What I needed to know was why the public loved John Gotti so much. I was aware of it, because his fame paralleled when I became famous, but why was he so adored?"

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