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In a surprise move, Universal Pictures has decided to adopt a hybrid release model for Halloween Kills. Rather than an exclusive theatrical bow, the long-awaited slasher sequel will enjoy a simultaneous premiere on Peacock the same day it hits the big screen next month on Friday, Oct. 15.
This last-minute twist was announced on social media Thursday afternoon via the official Halloween Twitter account. The dual strategy recalls the one enacted by Warner Bros. for the studio's entire 2021 release schedule (in which titles are made available on HBO Max the same they day they arrive in theaters).
Halloween Kills was originally scheduled to open last October, but was delayed by a year due to concerns related to the COVID-19 pandemic. During an interview that took place shortly after the postponement, producer Jason Blum assured fans that the second entry in the rebooted trilogy would come out in 2021 "come hell or high water, vaccine or no vaccine."
In addition, director/co-screenwriter David Gordon Green and producer/composer John Carpenter (whose 1978 classic kickstarted the entire franchise) softened the blow of the delay announcement with a sneak peek clip. Green, who co-wrote Kills alongside Danny McBride and Scott Teems, has described the film as an exploration of "how fear spreads virally."
Picking up directly after the events of Halloween 2018, Kills finds the people of Haddonfield joining forces in an attempt to rid their town of Michael Myers once and for all. The masked killer is once again on the loose after he's inadvertently f freed from Laurie Strode's burning house by unwitting firefighters.
Jamie Lee Curtis, Judy Greer, Andi Matichak, Will Patton, Thomas Mann, and Anthony Michael Hall co-star.
“I think that what David has done, particularly with the 2018 movie, was to explore something deeper," Curtis told Deadline at the Venice Film Festival. "We’re actors, so the deeper you want us to go, the deeper we will go, but also it was prescient what David and company figured out: We were on a verge of a wave of women understanding their own trauma and voicing it. The collision between the reality of life and the reality of Laurie’s life… happened in a pretty profound way.”
(Universal Pictures, Peacock & SYFY WIRE are all owned by NBCUniversal)