UNDATED (CNN) -- It's been six months since legendary pop singer Whitney Houston died. And today, her final film, "Sparkle" opens in theaters. Houston's untimely death in February caused a bit of a crisis for the movie's producers. Here's a look at how Hollywood handles tragedies such as this one.
Its likely Hollywood will one day make a movie about the life of Whitney Houston. But, what about the movie the star had just finished shooting when she died? "Sparkle" producer Debra Martin Chase says, "Inevitably, there's that first question, 'Well, do we need to change anything?'"
Houston's sudden passing left studio execs and filmmakers, like producer Debra Martin Chase, scrambling for answers about the film's release date and its script. Chase says, "There are a couple lines in the movie that, in light of events, you hear them and you're like, 'Oh, my God, I can't believe she's saying that.' The world was asking, 'Were we going to speed up the release of the movie?'"
cinematic arts professor, Jason Squire and entertainment lawyer Bianca Goodloe agree, "Sparkle" is part of an unfortunate trend in Hollywood, feature films requiring crisis management. Goodloe says, "You really need to repackage them and repurpose them in a way that is not going to continue to put off audiences."
Like earlier this year, when neighborhood watchman George Zimmerman shot and killed Florida teenager Trayvon Martin. Squire says, "...changing the title of "The Watch." That used to be "Neighborhood Watch," because it's simply inappropriate after the headlines."
And even more recently, in July, when a gunman opened fire on a midnight screening of "The Dark Knight Rises."
Tragically, that same audience was among the first to see a preview for another film which, in a horrific coincidence, showed mobsters shooting at theater patrons. Squire says, "But, in this case, they can move very quickly, and they did -- removing the trailer for "Gangster Squad," and shifting the release date of that movie."
Not only do studios want to react respectfully to a unexpected disaster, they also have a bottom line to consider. Squire says, "You spend mountains of money, obscene amounts of money. So, they have to take great care when this issue comes up."
Heath Ledger died while filming "The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassas." filmmakers were forced to cast additional actors to finish the movie.
Sometimes, sensitive footage has to be removed, like the world trade center scenes in "Spiderman" following 9/11 or pulling a movie from an entire country, which happened to the tsunami thriller, "Hereafter," following the Japanese disaster.
Real-life catastrophe is something Hollywood never expects, but with more movies coming out every year, and increasingly uncertain times, well, studios should always be prepared."
Goodloe says, "Keep everything in perspective. Give it time. Let it breathe. And this too shall pass."
As for "Sparkle," in the end, no changes were made to the film's content or release date. Chase says, "We just said, 'No,' because she wouldn't have wanted us to. This was a movie that she loved, and she was passionate about."
A movie with its own set of challenges, that Chase hopes moves audiences this weekend.