Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper tend to have pretty good luck when it comes to making magic at the box office. The twosome have appeared on-screen in multiple films already -- 2012's Silver Linings Playbook and 2013's American Hustle, both of which crossed the coveted 100 million dollar box office threshold. Both movies were helmed by acclaimed director and Academy Award nominee, David O' Russell. Lawrence and Cooper received dual Oscar nominations for both films, with Lawrence taking home the Best Actress statuette for her role in Playbook.
It's a little known fact that the cinema super couple shot another film together directly after they completed work on Playbook, in early 2012. That film, entitled Serena, is a period piece set during the Great Depression, that follows the story of Serena Pemberton as she learns that she will not be able to have children. This becomes a massive problem for her husband, George, who owns a burgeoning timber business and needs an heir to continue his legacy. This turn of events sends Serena into an uncontrollable downward spiral.
Lawrence was already attached to Serena before filming was completed on Playbook. However, the male lead had yet to be cast. After hitting it off with Cooper, Lawrence suggested to the film's director, Suzanne Bier, that he be cast in the role. That casting quickly came to fruition and filming in the Czech Republic was completed in under two months. More than two years later, the film has yet to be released, leaving many wondering if we'll ever get to see it.
At first, it seemed as though it was a natural decision to not release the film until after the Oscar whirlwind surrounding Cooper and Lawrence's turn in Playbook had calmed down, in order to ensure audiences didn't confuse the two movies. But with Serena still out there in the ether, it's clear that it wasn't a calculated choice.
Back in Nov. 2013, The Hollywood Reporter reported on the film, saying that it would soon be screened for various distributors, giving hope that it would finally be released to the public. Rumors spread that The Weinstein Company, who distributed Playbook, was very interested in the project. THR speculated that there could have been problems during the shoot which has delayed its release, but an anonymous industry insider told them, "There were no reshoots or anything like that. It was just a real precision edit because the story is about a woman's descent into madness. And Susanne is a total perfectionist."
However, that information was countered with a new report by the Citizen Times in Apr. 2014 that stated it could be Lawrence's extremely busy production schedule on other films that is delaying the release as she hasn't been available to do ADR (automated dialogue replacement) for the film, which would be necessary before its release.
Back in Mar. 2014, Richard Bridgland, Serena's production designer, posted stills of Lawrence and Cooper in character during the shooting of the movie (if you would like to view them, you can find the complete set of photos here). Bridgland did this seemingly without permission from anyone related to the movie, which is more evidence that suggests audiences probably won't see this film anytime in the near future. Meanwhile, Beir has a new film that will premiere at this year's Toronto International Film Festival, which is entitled A Second Chance. She has yet to speak out on the status of Serena and the film still has no known distributor.
It seems slightly odd that this film is having this much trouble getting released, especially with Lawrence being one of the most sought after actresses in Hollywood. That, coupled with Cooper's own brand of star power seems like the perfect recipe for another successful trip to the top of the box office and more Academy Award nominations. It's easy to assume that there is some other reason that this film has been placed in a never ending purgatory and it appears that we could be waiting quite a while to find out exactly what that reason is.