Joey Nolfi
March 03, 2017 AT 03:24 PM EST

Elle Fanning’s transgender teen drama 3 Generations has a release date… again.

Almost 18 months after The Weinstein Co. pulled the film from its initially scheduled Sept. 18, 2015 launch, the distributor has reset the Gaby Dellal-directed drama for a May 5 theatrical bow. It will debut in New York and Los Angeles on that date, with plans to expand nationwide shortly thereafter.

Before its limited release, the film will open Geena Davis’ Bentonville Film Festival on May 2.

The decision to push back the film’s release, EW has learned, was made to give Dellal more creative freedom to add footage and edit the project, further fleshing out the film’s focus on three central characters.

“I am thrilled to release our film 3 Generations, with the original title, into the world. Harvey’s enthusiasm and support has allowed us to release this poignant film at a time when we all need to believe in our collective strength. Throughout making this film I have met loving families, fearless transgender youth and women who have fought for gender equality for decades. This film, both heart-warming and heart wrenching, is for them,” Dellal said in a statement, while executive producer and star Naomi Watts, added, “This story loudly and bravely advocates for acceptance, both of others and of oneself. It’s a message we all believe in and are all incredibly proud to share this story with audiences, now more than ever.”

3 Generations had its world premiere at the 2015 Toronto International Film Festival, where it received mixed reviews under its original title, About Ray. The film was initially pegged for an Oscar-qualifying run in late 2015 after the initial shuffle, though a date never materialized.

The film follows a trans boy (Fanning) as he comes out to his family, which includes his mother Maggie (Watts), grandmother Dolly (Susan Sarandon), and inattentive father Craig (Tate Donovan).

“I definitely knew it would be a huge challenge to do — I definitely have never done anything like that before. I have a lot of transgender friends who go to my school and have made a transition over the summer,” Fanning previously revealed at the PEOPLE, InStyle, and Entertainment Weekly photo studio at the 2015 festival. “Reading this story and how current it seems. It’s not just about a transgender teen, it’s about family and how everyone is dealing with it. I just love Ray, and love the story.”

Watch 3 Generations‘ TIFF trailer above.

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