By Maureen Lee Lenker
June 22, 2020 at 05:00 PM EDT

Who lives in a pineapple on VOD? SpongeBob Squarepants!

Everyone's favorite absorbent, yellow, and porous sea creature is heading to a small screen near you. On Monday, Viacom announced plans for The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge on the Run to bypass a planned theatrical debut and launch on digital rental services, before finding a more permanent and exclusive home on CBS All Access in 2021. Variety exclusively reported the news.

The latest feature film adventure for SpongeBob was originally slated to open in theaters on May 22, and had already been postponed to Aug. 7 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Credit: Paramount Pictures

It now joins several other feature films that have opted to skip a theatrical run altogether, instead launching on streaming platforms. Paramount previously sent March release The Lovebirds directly to Netflix. Universal's Trolls World Tour and The King of Staten Island, as well as Warner Bros.' Scoob opted for VOD releases with premium rental fees for at-home audiences. Disney has also followed suit, sending Artemis Fowl and the highly anticipated live-to-film recording of Hamilton to Disney+ this summer.

“We are thrilled to have The Spongebob Movie: Sponge on the Run,” a premier, first-run movie from one of ViacomCBS’ biggest brands, join CBS All Access’ expanding slate of franchise content from across ViacomCBS,” said Marc DeBevoise, chief digital officer at ViacomCBS and president and CEO of ViacomCBS Digital, in a statement. “This launch will be perfectly timed with our continued expansion and planned rebranding of the service in early 2021, as we welcome SpongeBob and the gang from Bikini Bottom to the service in the biggest way possible.”

All previous seasons of Nickelodeon series SpongeBob Squarepants are also headed to CBS All Access.

Since SpongeBob Squarepants premiered on Nickelodeon in 1999, it's been a beloved family property. This was meant to mark SpongeBob's third outing in movie theaters, as the third film after 2004's The SpongeBob Squarepants Movie and 2015's The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water. The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge on the Run follows SpongeBob and his best friend Patrick Star on a rescue mission to save SpongeBob's pet Gary after he is snail-napped. The two leave Bikini Bottom and head to the Lost City of Atlantic City on an epic adventure.

The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge on the Run will hit streaming platforms in early 2021.

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