The Lovebirds, which stars Nanjiani and Rae as a troubled couple who are pulled into a murder mystery, will head to Netflix, forgoing a theatrical release in light of the ongoing coronavirus outbreak. The film had been scheduled to premiere at SXSW before hitting theaters on April 3; distributor Paramount announced it would postpone the film’s release last week. The film’s streaming date has yet be announced.
Directed by Michael Showalter (The Big Sick), The Lovebirds follows Nanjiani and Rae’s couple, who are on the verge of a breakup, over the course of a very long night in New Orleans. After a man steals their car and commits a murder with said car, leaving them implicated for the crime, they must attempt to track down the actual murderers in order to clear their name.
Many studios have opted to release their films on VOD early as the coronavirus pandemic has forced movie theaters across the country to shut down. However, this is the first instance of a title moving to Netflix instead (although Disney has opted to release Frozen II and Onward through its own streaming platform, Disney+). It’s worth noting that Paramount and Netflix have a history of doing business together; the streaming service acquired The Cloverfield Paradox from the studio and released Paramount’s Annihilation internationally in 2018. Later that year, the companies signed a multi-picture film deal, and they have also collaborated on such TV productions as Maniac and 13 Reasons Why.
Paramount has also postponed the release of A Quiet Place Part II, which had been set to hit theaters this month. At present, that film is still slated for a theatrical release later in the year.