We’re still not sure exactly when or how movie theaters will reopen—despite how eager a few government leaders are to get things back up and running—and while some studios are holding out in the hopes of a late summer return, Judd Apatow and Universal aren’t taking any chances. The Wrap reports that the studio has decided to release Apatow’s latest directorial effort, The King Of Staten Island, on digital platforms on June 12—seven days ahead of its intended theatrical release. The news arrived just as Apatow shared a video chat with the film’s star, Pete Davidson, who co-wrote The King Of Staten Island with former SNL writer Dave Sirus.
The comedy was set to have its world premiere at the 2020 SXSW film festival in March; the festival was one of many canceled in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Loosely based on Davidson’s own life, The King Of Staten Island also stars Steve Buscemi, Marisa Tomei, Maude Apatow, Bel Powley, Bill Burr, and Moises Arias. The film is described as follows:
Scott (Davidson) has been a case of arrested development ever since his firefighter father died when he was seven. He’s now reached his mid-20s having achieved little, chasing a dream of becoming a tattoo artist that seems far out of reach. As his ambitious younger sister (Maude Apatow) heads off to college, Scott is still living with his exhausted ER nurse mother (Tomei) and spends his days smoking weed, hanging with the guys–Oscar (Velez), Igor (Arias) and Richie (TV’s The Guest Book)–and secretly hooking up with his childhood friend Kelsey (Powley). But when his mother starts dating a loudmouth firefighter named Ray (Burr), it sets off a chain of events that will force Scott to grapple with his grief and take his first tentative steps toward moving forward in life.
Universal was one of the first studios to shift its new releases to VOD following nationwide theater closures, making The Invisible Man and The Hunt available to rent (at a higher price point than typical VOD rentals) following shortened theatrical runs. While The King Of Staten Island is moving ahead with a (modified) summer release, Universal has shuffled dates for other high profile titles, pushing Fast And Furious sequel F9 back to 2021.