Sony Cancels The Release Of 'The Interview' After Threats Of Terror In Cinemas
The Debrief: Is this the end of free speech in the creative industries?
Sony have decided to pull The Interview, the Seth Rogen and James Franco movie about a plot to kill Kim Jung Un, after repeated threats from those behind the Sony hacked emails.
On Wednesday, the NYC premiere was cancelled, and major cinema chains said they wouldn't screen the film after a threatening message from the hacker group calling themselves Guardians of Peace: 'The world will be full of fear [...] remember the 11th of September 2001. We recommend you to keep yourself distant from the places at that time. Whatever comes in the coming days is called by the greed of Sony Pictures Entertainment.'
Anonymous sources say the FBI have linked the group to North Korea (er, obviously) and Sony are understandably disappointed with the decision: 'In light of the decision by the majority of our exhibitors not to show the film The Interview, we have decided not to move forward with the planned December 25 theatrical release,' it said. 'We respect and understand our partners' decision and, of course, completely share their paramount interest in the safety of employees and theatre-goers. We stand by our film makers and their right to free expression and are extremely disappointed by this outcome.'
While James Franco and Seth Rogen have been uncharacteristically quiet on the social media front, other celebrities have reacted to the news with shock - understandable, considering the terrifying precedent this may set. What if someone is offended by the sex in rom coms, the violence in thrillers and the horror in, erm, horror and sends a threatening email? Do we just pull everything anonymous people tell us to?
Saw @Sethrogen at JFK. Both of us have never seen or heard of anything like this. Hollywood has done Neville Chamberlain proud today.— Rob Lowe (@RobLowe) December 17, 2014
Sad day for creative expression. #feareatsthesoul— Steve Carell (@SteveCarell) December 17, 2014
What if an anonymous person got offended by something an executive at Coke said. Will we all have to stop drinking Coke?— Judd Apatow (@JuddApatow) December 17, 2014
Dear Sony Hackers: now that u run Hollywood, I'd also like less romantic comedies, fewer Michael Bay movies and no more Transformers.— Michael Moore (@MMFlint) December 17, 2014
Oh, hackers, one more thing - I lost like $180K on "Canadian Bacon". Can u do the opposite of what u just did & get it back IN to theaters?— Michael Moore (@MMFlint) December 17, 2014
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