UPDATE: Tim League, founder of Austin’s Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, tweeted, “Sony has authorized screenings of The Interview on Christmas Day. We are making shows available within the hour. #Victory” While Sony has offered no official comment, other select theaters have also indicated that the movie will be shown on Thursday.
Sony has taken a lot of heat for their decision to withdraw The Interview from its December 25th theatrical release, with even President Barack Obama calling the move to appease hackers “a mistake.” Following the criticism, Sony Pictures is now insisting The Interview will be distributed in some capacity.
Speaking to Meet the Press Sunday, Sony lawyer David Boies said The Interview is only being “delayed,” a major turnaround from their previous statement that they have “no further release plans” for the North Korea-baiting film. “Sony only delayed this,” Boies said, adding that the company is the victim of a “state-sponsored criminal act.” “Sony has been fighting to get this picture distributed. It will be distributed. How it’s going to be distributed I don’t think anyone knows quite yet.”
Sony has reportedly found a way to distribute the film to the masses while also sidestepping nervous cinema owners: Stream The Interview for free. Sources tell the New York Post that The Interview may be heading to the Sony-owned streaming service Crackle, home of Jerry Seinfeld’s “Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee” and other Sony TV and film properties.
After Obama and everyone from George R.R. Martin to Stephen King blasted Sony for bending to the hackers’ demands and pulling the film, Sony Pictures CEO Michael Lynton said, “I think actually the unfortunate part is, in this instance, the president, the press and the public are mistaken as to what actually happened. We do not own movie theaters. We cannot determine whether or not a movie will be played in movie theaters.”
“There are a number of options open to us and we have considered those and are considering them,” Lynton added. “As it stands right now – while there have been a number of suggestions that we go out there and deliver this movie digitally or through VOD, there has not been one major VOD – video on demand distributor – one major e-commerce site that has stepped forward and said they are willing to distribute this movie for us.”
A day after North Korea accused the U.S. of framing them for the cyber attack – and after the Guardians of Peace mocked the FBI – the secretive nation issued another strong warning to the U.S., who North Korea accuses of actually bankrolling The Interview, CNN reports.
“Nothing is more serious miscalculation than guessing that just a single movie production company is the target of this counteraction. Our target is all the citadels of the U.S. imperialists who earned the bitterest grudge of all Koreans,” North Korea’s state-run news agency wrote in a dispatch. “Our toughest counteraction will be boldly taken against the White House, the Pentagon and the whole U.S. mainland, the cesspool of terrorism.”