‘Point Break’ LA Press Screenings Canceled by Warner Bros.

The studio has embargoed reviews until the wee hours of Christmas morning, which is never a good sign

Warner Bros. has canceled L.A. press screenings of Alcon Entertainment’s “Point Break” that were slated for Dec. 23, two days before the action movie opens wide on Christmas Day, the studio announced Wednesday.

In an email sent to media, Warner Bros. (which is merely distributing the Alcon production) apologized for any inconvenience and said that “due to unforeseen circumstances we are no longer able to offer the all media screenings as planned.”

While early buzz on “Point Break” has not been kind, an individual with knowledge of the studio’s thinking told TheWrap that the all-media screening was deemed too close to the Christmas holiday (when many industry observers are out of town), and that Warner Bros. hasn’t been shy about showing the movie.

Indeed, WB has held tastemaker and promotional screenings in the weeks leading up to the film’s release, and select journalists were invited to the “Point Break” premiere in Hollywood on Tuesday night.

That said, Warners has taken the rare step of setting the “Point Break” review embargo on opening day — specifically 12:01 a.m. PT on Dec. 25 — indicating that the studio may not believe reviews will benefit the movie.

Of course, the original “Point Break” starring Keanu Reeves and Patrick Swayze didn’t win any Oscars either, so the remake starring Luke Bracey and Edgar Ramirez isn’t likely counting on a groundswell of support from critics. With its emphasis on extreme sports and eye-popping stunts, the movie may very well be review-proof.

Either way, “Point Break” will need all the help it can get, as it’s expected to gross around $15 million over the three-day opening weekend — a disappointing figure for a film with a reported production budget of $105 million.