After Warner Bros. Discovery seemingly dropped the final anvil on the head of “Coyote vs. Acme,” screenwriter Samy Burch is speaking out about the shelved film.

Burch told IndieWire’s Vincent Perella on the red carpet for the 2024 Oscars that the conversation is “ongoing” about whether or not the film will see the light of day.

“As far as I know, it’s ongoing,” Burch said. “I think we’re all pretty heartbroken about it. We hope it will somehow find its home and not end up stuck in a vault for the rest of time. That would be a great resolution.”

While the story outline for the feature was reportedly leaked via Paste Bin in early March 2024, Warner Bros. has yet to officially announce the fate of the completed live-action and cartoon hybrid film. John Cena and Will Forte star in the film which was at first announced as being sold to another interested studio. The $70 million feature was cited as a quarterly loss by the studio after the movie did not receive offers that recouped the production costs.

IndieWire can confirm that Netflix and Paramount each submitted offers to purchase “Coyote vs. Acme” from the studio for $30 million, less than half of the budget of the movie. WBD turned down both offers.

“I know that they have been screening places and I think they still are,” Burch said. “I hope that I’m allowed to say that. I’m going completely rogue here. It’s just the best group of people. Dave Green, who directed it, I just love so much. Will Forte is amazing in the movie. I’ve seen the final cut of the completed film and I’m very proud of it.”

The social media backlash against WBD called for “Coyote vs. Acme” to be released and not go the way of “Batgirl” and “Scoob! Holiday Haunt,” other shelved properties that were scrapped for tax write-offs. “Coyote vs. Acme” star Forte took to Twitter to share that he “fucking hated” how the studio dealt with the feature despite its positive test screenings.

Per the shared story via Paste Bin, the film opens in 1985 with Peter Lorre interfering with an Acme assembly line and later jumps to present day where the film’s protagonist Kevin Avery (Will Forte) is a small claims attorney who is representing Wile E. Coyote against Acme Corporation. Wile is suing for damages, and Kevin goes up against corrupt Acme attorney Buddy Crane (John Cena) in court.

IndieWire has reached out to Warner Bros. Discovery to confirm the leak is valid.

“Coyote vs. Acme” completed production in New Mexico in 2022 and was set to start streaming on WBD’s platform Max on July 21. James Gunn produced the feature and was also credited with the story; “May December” screenwriter Samy Burch penned the script with Dave Green directing.

Director Green wrote on social media after WBD announced the film would be scrapped, “For three years, I was lucky enough to make a movie about Wile E. Coyote, the most persistent, passionate, and resilient character of all time. I was surrounded by a brilliant team, who poured their souls into this project for years. We were all determined to honor the legacies of these historic characters and actually get them right. Along the ride, we were embraced by test audiences who rewarded us with fantastic scores. I am beyond proud of the final product, and beyond devastated by WB’s decision. But in the spirit of Wile E. Coyote, resilience and persistence win the day.”

A Warner Bros. Motion Pictures Group spokesperson said when announcing the film’s cancellation, “With the re-launch of Warner Bros. Pictures Animation in June, the studio has shifted its global strategy to focus on theatrical releases. With this new direction, we have made the difficult decision not to move forward with ‘Coyote vs Acme.’ We have tremendous respect for the filmmakers, casts, and crew, and are grateful for their contributions to the film. This was a tough decision, and we recognize and deeply appreciate the effort and time that goes into making a movie.”

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