‘Little Fish’ is a pandemic love story filmed long before COVID

In the new sci-fi film “Little Fish,” the world is battling a devastating pandemic. But the film was written and filmed before COVID-19 came to the United States.

Unlike COVID, the virus in the film causes both young and old people to lose their memory, sometimes gradually or sometimes very suddenly. 

There are planes falling out of the sky because pilots forget how to steer mid-flight, fishing boats sinking, and musicians losing their ability to play their instruments.

In the film, this pandemic is called Neuro-Inflammatory Affliction, or N.I.A. And for newlyweds Emma and Jude, played by Olivia Cooke and Jack O’Connell, the virus threatens to erase the memories of how they fell in love and their relationship completely. And as Jude begins to lose his memory, the couple has to try anything to save their love story.

Director Chad Hartigan behind-the-scenes on the set of “Little Fish.”Photo courtesy of IFC Films.

“Little Fish” is directed by Chad Hartigan, who says he was nervous to watch his film at the start of the coronavirus pandemic. But now, he welcomes the film’s new resonance, “I started to feel more comfortable with the idea that maybe the pandemic was going to put people in a state of mind that they'd be more receptive to this type of story of love, and getting through unprecedented times together.”