The romantic comedy Palm Springs has continued with its successful run by becoming the most-watched film within the first three days of release to ever debut on Hulu. Earlier this year, the film had debuted at the Sundance Film Festival, where it sold to Hulu and Neon for just over $17.5 million, making it the biggest deal in the history of the festival.
Proving that the two records aren't random flukes, the movie is also said to have generated the highest amount of social media interest for any Hulu original film so far over its premiere weekend by becoming the most discussed Hulu original film on Twitter over its first three days. Aside from the online buzz and streaming numbers, Palm Springs has also managed to net a 92% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes since its release.
All in all, the small-budget rom-com has far exceeded expectations and proved that, far from the doom-and-gloom scenario that many industry experts have predicted for indie films in today's entertainment landscape which sees big-budget action spectacles dominate the box office, there is still a strong demand for more intimate movies featuring charming leads and an engaging premise.
Palm Springs features Andy Samberg and Cristin Milioti in the lead roles of Nyles and Sarah, two wedding guests at a Palm Springs resort who are trapped in a time loop, reliving the same day over and over again. Peter Gallagher, Camila Mendes, and J.K. Simmons rounds out the rest of the main cast. The film marks the directorial debut of Max Barbakow and screenwriter Andy Siara. Samberg produced the movie under the banner of The Lonely Island production group.
The movie has been frequently compared to Groundhog Day based on the time loop premise, and the romantic comedy elements, but reviewers declare that Palm Springs is able to stand on its own as a separate story instead of coming off as a pale imitation of the Bill Murray-led classic. In fact, Siara had recently shared that the original script for Palm Springs had been much darker than Groundhog Day.
"The first version of this movie was more of like Leaving Las Vegas, where this guy goes out to Palm Springs to essentially kill himself. And then it just evolved over the years for a variety of reasons. I got married, fell in love, and started a family, and a lot of it is kind of about that. And Max went through shit. But it was always, from the beginning, me and Max as kind of acting as each other's therapists and entertaining each other and trying to make each other laugh."
The success of Palm Springs has also bolstered Samberg's profile as a movie leading man, after the mixed response to his previous film to open in theaters, Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping. Hopefully, Palm Spings will encourage more streaming platforms to invest in old-school rom coms featuring popular faces and engaging plotlines that don't rely on extensive use of CGI or action sequences to make an impact. This news was first reported at IndieWire. Siara's comment regarding the film come from Conseuqneces of Sound.