For past couple of weeks, the shadowy group Guardians Of Peace have been making conducting business extremely difficult for Sony after the wide-ranging hack and leak of documents from nearly every corner of the movie studio. But yesterday, things took a far more chilling turn. For the first time, the group mentioned Seth Rogen and James Franco‘s “The Interview” by name, confirming that the release of the movie itself was the motivation for the actions. Furthermore, they warned moviegoers about the peril they might face if they went to see the film by posting the following online yesterday:
This warning is not being taken lightly. Both Rogen and Franco have cancelled all media appearances for the rest of the week, and Deadline reports that the Georgia-based Carmike theater chain has already made the decision to pull “The Interview” from their screens. Moreover, the ArcLight in California is expected to make an announcement today about their plans for the film. Meanwhile, the New York premiere scheduled for Thursday has also been canceled, and Sony is reportedly allowing exhibitors to choose not to screen the movie when it opens next week. But even in light of this unprecedented attack and attention on the movie, Rogen credits Sony with backing the comedy.
“There was a lot of discussion,” he told The New York Times in a talk that took place before yesterday’s developments, about making Kim Jong-Il the villain. “But it’s not an edgy position to take. It’s not like, ‘well, politically, you’ve got to look at both sides.’ He is bad. It’s controversial to him. But to everyone else, it’s fine. To their credit, [Sony] let us do it.
“They made us digitally change some photos and images, because it was decided they weren’t [legally] cleared,” Rogen added. “We couldn’t source the photographer in North Korea who took the photograph of Kim Il-sung [Kim Jong-un’s grandfather] 65 years ago. He could sue us. There was a moment where they were like: ‘they’ve threatened war over the movie. You kill him [Kim Jong-un]. Would you consider not killing him?’ And we were like, ‘nope.’ “
“The Interview” is still scheduled to open on Christmas Day. But if you can’t see it near you, here’s a clip of what you might be missing.