Seth Rogen‘s comedy An American Pickle is now headed to HBO Max after taking global rights to the feature from Sony Pictures. HBO Max is a new digital streaming service which will debut on May 27 and release the movie this summer under its Warner Max label.
Sony originally had set to open the film later this year, but the coronavirus pandemic altered its and numerous releases from major studios. In response to cinemas closing and studios postponing theatrical debuts, a number of films have segued to having distributors selling them off to streaming platforms such as Paramount’s Lovebirds to Netflix. An American Pickle follows the same route. Rogen and his Point Grey producing partners Evan Goldberg and James Weaver have agreed to getting a digital release this year and in turn, HBO Max will promote their A-list comedy.
Rogen holds dual leading roles for this movie, which is an adaptation of the 2013 New Yorker series Sell Out by Simon Rich. Rich adapted his own script and executive produced alongside the team. The project is directed by Brandon Trost, who was also the cinematographer of Rogen films This Is the End, Neighbors and The Interview.
The story centers around Herschel Greenbaum (Rogen), a struggling laborer who immigrates to America in 1920 with dreams of building a better life for his family. One day, while working at a pickle factory, he falls into a vat of pickles and is preserved for 100 years, later waking up in modern-day Brooklyn where he finds that he hasn’t aged at all. He seeks out his family, only to learn that his only surviving relative is his great-grandson, Ben Greenbaum (also played by Rogen), a mild-mannered computer coder whom Herschel can’t even begin to connect with, let alone understand verbally.
HBO Max CCO Kevin Reilly said in a statement that “HBO Max is in the market for motion pictures that stand out. And An American Pickle does stand out, with Seth in this wonderfully original, funny and heartfelt film that we look forward to debuting this summer.”
Rogen added, “We worked very hard and put as much of ourselves in this story as possible. We’re very proud of the end result and we can’t wait for people to get to see it.”