EXCLUSIVE: The Spike Jonze documentary Beastie Boys Story has put a hold on its IMAX theatrical release which was originally set for April 3. A new theatrical date will be announced at a later date, but on the brighter side of things, the docu about the iconic music group will stream on Apple TV+ starting April 24.
“Our highest priority is the health of our audiences and employees, as well as their families and communities,” said an IMAX spokesperson in a statement given to Deadline. “Given the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting theatre closures nationwide, we have decided to postpone the theatrical release of ‘Beastie Boys Story’ to a later date, which will be announced as soon as possible. IMAX ticket holders can receive a full refund by contacting their local theatre. Beastie Boys Story, directed by Spike Jonze, will premiere on Apple TV+ on April 24.”
In January, Apple acquired the docu written by Jonze and the seminal rap group’s founding members Mike Diamond and Adam Horovitz. As part of the deal, a special cut of the film was set to open exclusively in select Imax theaters. The film was also set to make its world premiere at SXSW before the festival was canceled.
The timing of the film comes ahead of the 26th anniversary of the release of Beastie Boys’ fourth album Ill Communication. Jonze directed the music video for the album’s hit “Sabotage.”
The film is billed as a live documentary experience that will focus on the history and legacy of the group and its intimate, personal story. The project grew out of Diamond (aka Mike D) and Horowitz’s (aka MCA) collaboration on Beastie Boys Book, published in October 2018.
Diamond (Mike D) and Adam Yauch (aka MCA) were part of a New York punk band in the late 1970s. They eventually transitioned to rap after adding Horowitz (Ad-Rock) and hit big in 1986 with their debut album Licensed To Ill, setting the up to become one of rap’s most successful groups, winning three Grammys. Yauch, who later would launch indie film distributor Oscilloscope Laboratories, died of cancer in 2012, the same year the group was elected into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
Beastie Boys Story is produced by Grammy Award winner Jason Baum, Amanda Adelson, alongside director and writer Jonze, and executive produced by Mike Diamond, Adam Horovitz, Dechen Wangdu-Yauch, John Silva, John Cutcliffe, Peter Smith, Thomas Benski, Dan Bowen, Sam Bridger, Michele Anthony, David Blackman and Ashley Newton. Losel Yauch, Frances Yauch and Jonah Hill serve as co-executive producers.