– by David Morgan-Brown
The awards seasons and the number of hotly anticipated films being released at this time is being overshadowed by the real-life drama of the Sony Pictures hack. For those out of the know, here’s the skinny: a group of hackers calling themselves ‘Guardians of Peace’ (GOP) have hacked into computers at Sony Pictures and have retrieved a plethora of personal information including email exchanges, salaries, budgets, medical records, and full HD files of upcoming Sony films. There’s been so much leaked so far, too much to include an overview of it all in this article, but I’ve put together my own narrative of it mostly containing the funniest elements, making this news story even funnier than any of the films Sony Pictures have released in the past five years.
Oddly enough, the reason for this leak in the first place is due to the upcoming Seth Rogen and James Franco satire The Interview – reports say it is because of the film’s negative stance against North Korea’s leader Kim Jong Un, though I think it’s because they’re trying to save the world from another unfunny Seth Rogen comedy. GOP continue to make threats as of writing this, urging Sony Pictures not to release the film they’ve already spent half a hundred million dollars on, sending the company vague threats that will either turn out to be horrifically deadly or just blown smoke.
These massive leaks, one after the other (with more to come), was retaliation against Sony Pictures, proving how serious GOP are. The North Korean Nation Defence Commission denounced responsibility for the attack, but praised it as a “righteous deed” and claimed “Sony Pictures is the very one which was going to produce a film abetting a terrorist act while hurting the dignity of the supreme leadership of [North Korea]”. Perhaps The Interview should come with a satire tag for anyone believing it truly supports terrorism and assassinations. Speaking of assassinations, the Executive Director of the Centre of Korean-American Peace commented that it’s no wonder America has produced a film supporting assassination since they are apparently responsible for the assassinations of leaders from “Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria and Ukraine. And let us not forget who killed Kennedy – Americans. In fact, President Obama should be careful in case the US military wants to kill him as well.” He then goes on to say he prefers British films over the American ones because he finds them more realistic, which I think I can at least agree with him on that point.
Since this leak doesn’t include any nude photos (so far), the personal contents of the leak (apart from the films) have been published and republished across numerous journalism sites, turning this leak into a lake across the world wide web. The folks at Sony Pictures must be stressing out at the moment over all this, yet in my personal opinion this has all been beneficial to them. There’s a particular falsity to these mega-corporations that profit on creating fantasies due to how they carefully construct the personas of themselves and their celebrity clients. But with this leak of information that’s out of their control, it turns out that the Heads and CEOs of Sony Pictures are just like regular people – they express casual racism, they diss their most popular clients, they’re particular hostile and unfriendly with each other, they allocate sexist salaries, and they’re wondering why they’re still making Adam Sandler films. They’ve turned out to be exactly as anyone would expect them to be – arrogant, clueless, yet even more critical of their own films than I am.
Sony Pictures has somewhat complied to GOP’s threats – they are continuing to release the film in most Western countries, but have alerted all cinema chains that they don’t have to release the films if they feel threatened, with the fourth biggest cinema chain in American, Carmike Cinemas, already deciding not to screen the film (that’s 278 cinemas not to be graced by this controversial flick). With The Interview set for release on the 25th December, it’s going to make for a very interesting Christmas this year. Even if this whole fiasco does end up resulting in World War 3 and the apocalypse of the entire Western world, it’d probably still be less of a travesty than the film.
UPDATE: Sony Pictures have completely withdrawn The Interview’s cinematic release. As they say in Counter-Strike, “terrorists win”.