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Thriller ‘You Should Have Left’ to Skip Theaters, Will Premiere On-Demand June 19

Torrey Hart

Universal Pictures’ upcoming psychological thriller “You Should Have Left” will skip theaters and go straight to paid video-on-demand, in line with the company’s new model proposed amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Variety reported on Monday.

Made in conjunction with Blumhouse Productions and starring Kevin Bacon and Amanda Seyfried, the film will be available to rent on June 19. The pair portray a married couple who travels with their 6-year-old to a remote house in the Alps as Bacon’s screenwriter character works on a sequel to his hit movie.

Universal found success releasing “Trolls World Tour” on-demand for $19.99 in April due to the mass closures of theaters nationwide, amassing over $100 million in the first three weeks it was available. In the wake of that trial run, NBC Universal CEO Jeff Shell said that more digital-only releases were “inevitable,” sparking an ongoing dispute with major players in the brick-and-mortar theater industry.

AMC, for example, was quick to say it would no longer play Universal films should the company continue making new content immediately available on-demand.

In response to the backlash from theaters, Comcast (NBCU’s parent company) executive Mike Cavanaugh said in May that films would be considered on a “title by title” basis for PVOD. But Cavanaugh also added: “It’s probably a two-year story until we get back to releasing big movies.”

While some blockbuster titles have been pushed out to 2021, a number of major studios have joined Universal in rolling out content digitally throughout the pandemic.

Disney made “Onward,” a Pixar animated film, available for digital purchase on Disney+ in April, months ahead of schedule and will make “Artemis Fowl” available June 12. Judd Apatow’s “The King of Staten Island” will also hit rental services June 12, while other titles have been sold to streaming video-on-demand platforms – including Paramount’s “Lovebirds” to Netflix, Universal/Blumhouse’s “Run Sweetheart Run” to Amazon Prime Video and Sony’s “Greyhound” to Apple TV+.

Photo credit: Universal

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