In Instagram posts shared on Sunday evening, Dolan said he had to rework the first cut of the film, which lasted over four hours.
“What you need to hear from me is that Jessica Chastain’s character, after what was a long period of reflection, had to be cut from the film,” he said, adding that the decision was “editorial” and not reflective of Chastain’s performance in the drama.
Instead, Dolan explained, Chastain’s “villain” character “did not feel like it belonged to the rest of the story.”
“I am disappointed that we didn’t get to reveal the exciting things we crafted together on this one adventure,” he said, adding he wanted fans to hear the news from him.
However, Montreal native Dolan added he is “beyond happy” with the film and “eager” to share it with fans — but did not give a release date.
“The Death and Life of John F. Donovan,” which documents a young actor’s reflections on correspondence he shared with an American TV star as a child, is Dolan’s most ambitious work yet — and his first English-language film, with stars including Kit Harington and Susan Sarandon.