Remember when movies were shown in movie theaters? As you may have noticed, COVID-19 has laid waste to all aspects of society, forcing industries to sudden and desperate measures to survive. The movie industry, like many, has partially wound up moving online, releasing titles on streaming services, albeit often for a price. And now, as per The Hollywood Reporter, one film due in a couple weeks — the Kumail Nanjiani-Issa Rae rom-com The Lovebirds — will simply be dropped on Netflix.
Directed by The State/Wet Hot Summer alum Michael Showalter, who also helmed Nanjiani’s The Big Sick, The Lovebirds follows a couple who wind up mistakenly accused of murder and are forced to try and clear their names. It was scheduled to premiere at SXSW, which was canceled due to the coronavirus, and then hit theaters nationwide on April 3. Last week, Regal and AMC both closed their theaters nationwide for the time being, while all of the major studios, as well as the independents, have pulled their movies from the release calendar for the time being. (That said, drive-ins have become one of the only sources of movie revenue in these social distancing times. Let’s make drive-ins make a major comeback.)
In the meantime, as of Friday you can now stream, for a price, such recent releases as The Invisible Man, The Hunt, and Emma., while some art house theaters in major cities have made certain titles — like the Brazilian class satire Bacurau, about a small town whose residents fight back against the powerful people who don’t care if they die — available to rent through repertory venues, like NYC’s Lincoln Center, that could use your support in these dire times.