After acquiring many films from Paramount Pictures that were destined to hit theaters, including Coming 2 America, The Tomorrow War and Without Remorse and in the process of possibly buying MGM for $9 billion dollars, Amazon Studios has bought 20th Century Studios’ Everybody’s Talking About Jamie, which is now set to release on September 17th on Prime Video. The film adaptation of the 2017 West End Musical of the same name about a 16-year old teenager who dreams of becoming a drag queen, starring Max Harwood as the titular character, Ralph Ineson and Richard E. Grant, was slated to initially release on October 23rd, 2020, but was delayed to January 22nd, 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Theatrical plans of the movie have now been scrapped and will premiere exclusively on Amazon’s streaming service.
In a press statement, Amazon Studios chief Jennifer Salke mentions that “Everybody’s Talking About Jamie’ has quickly become one of the most beloved musicals of recent years.” and that “Jamie’s story is one that resonates across all generations — it’s about unconditional love and we know our global audiences will fall in love with Jamie as he overcomes adversity to truly find his authentic self. We are so thrilled to share this joyful and inspirational story with the world.”
The director of the film, Jonathan Butterell, who has also directed the West End Musical is “thrilled” that his movie, “the story of taking your place in the world with joy, pride and acceptance — will be winging its way across the world with the Amazon Family. Let’s come together to celebrate the glorious and fabulous uniqueness of each and every one of us.”
With theatres reopening across the globe and studios properly starting to test the waters next weekend with the release of A Quiet Place Part II and Cruella, it might’ve seemed that studios would’ve held off movies like Everybody’s Talking About Jamie to be experienced on the big screen. However, with vaccination campaigns advancing at a snail’s pace in countries like Canada (who is experiencing a third wave of COVID), studios seem to be reticent at fully hitting the gas pedal for exclusive theatrical experiences, with many theatrical-destined films still premiering exclusively on streaming services. This summer could very well dictate the future of moviegoing, as studios slowly start to see a light at the end of the tunnel, but after consumers being spoiled for one year with major studios releasing many of their tentpole pictures on streaming services (such as HBO Max and Disney+), will audiences go back? We shall see…