Ripped from the headlines plots are all well and good for Law & Order, but not so much for a Ben Affleck movie.
The U.K. premiere of Gone Baby Gone, Affleck's feature directing debut, has been delayed due to similarities between the story and the real-life disappearance of Madeline McCann, who vanished on a family vacation to Portugal in May.
Gone Baby Gone centers on the search for a kidnapped four-year-old girl in Boston. Not only does Madeline O'Brien, the actress who portrays the girl, share a first name with Madeline McCann, she's also said to bear a strong resemblance to the missing child.
The film, which stars Affleck's younger brother, Casey Affleck, was scheduled to debut at the London Film Festival next month and to open wide in November, but the release has now been postponed indefinitely.
"We have been closely following the case and have decided to delay the release of the film in the U.K.," said a spokeswoman for Buena Vista International U.K.
Earlier this week at the Deauville Film Festival, Affleck said the film would not be released if the situation was judged to be inappropriate.
"All the people involved in the film have much greater concern for Madeleine McCann than we do for the release of our project," he said.
"The movie will not be released if it is going to touch a nerve or inflame anybody's sensitivities."
"The movie is just a commercial matter, whereas this is a matter of life and death," he added.
The film's North American release is scheduled for Oct. 19.
Madeline McCann was reported missing May 3, after she disappeared from her Praia da Luz hotel bedroom where she had been left unattended while her parents dined at a nearby restaurant.
The McCann parents have recently been named as prime suspects in the case by Portuguese police, and could reportedly be charged with their daughter's "accidental killing" at any time, though no body has been found.