Current events have transformed the theatrical landscape to the point where it’s not at all odd to see big ticket movies pivoting to a VOD premiere. In particular, if the movie’s a Universal branded project, it’s even less surprising, as the studio has taken advantage of such debuts to keep their release slate moving. Which leads to the announcement that instead of getting to see Steve Carell’s new political comedy Irresistible in theaters, you’ll be able to catch it premiering on VOD this June.
Focus Features, one of Universal’s alternative film brands, has just announced that June 26th will now mark the debut of Irresistible for its certainly captive audience. Previously, the Jon Stewart written/directed film, co-starring Chris Cooper, Rose Byrne, and Mackenzie Davis, was going to be released in theaters on May 29th.
With all major theaters being closed due to the current pandemic crisis, a new strategy was in order. This was especially applicable due to the fact that Irresistible’s story about a political operative (Carell) trying to win a small town mayoral election with a retired military officer (Cooper) as his candidate is something that might have looked a bit less exciting outside of its original election year context.
This new announcement is sure to upset the folks that haven’t taken too kindly to Universal’s now continued pattern of releasing films like Trolls: World Tour, The High Note, and now Irresistible to home audiences without a theatrical debut component. But looking at how crowded the release schedule for the rest of 2020, and early 2021, are starting to look, prime release dates are far and few in-between.
Releasing Irresistible into another Universal VOD debut might end up being the wisest course of action that the movie could take. Instead of competing with blockbusters who might still find their release windows shuffled, Jon Stewart’s political comedy could stand out from the crowd with its non-conventional release.
More importantly, since Irresistible is a comedy, it’s a genre we really could use more new content out of in the current state of the world. As Stewart and Carell have been known to make audiences laugh about the current political landscape, it just makes this film live up to its name all the more aptly.
While theaters are aiming to reopen by the beginning of July, it doesn’t hurt to have new content still arriving on the home front for those who don’t feel ready to make their way back to the cineplex. Sometimes, you’ve got to strike while the iron is hot, and Irresistible is practically a cinematic blacksmith’s dream in that respect.
We’ll all see just how Irresistible this film is to the public, when it makes its VOD debut on June 26th, with 48-hour rentals going for $19.99.