What do you get when you cross a threat on America the great, a cyber hacking attack and a comedy about an assassination? Sony’s greatest online movie success to date.
After intense pressure from the international community, Sony decided to release the controversial movie “The Interview” on Christmas Eve 2014 online. The movie became available on Google Play Movies, YouTube, iTunes, and Xbox Video for $14.99 to buy and $5.99 to rent.
Costing $44M to produce, the movie made back one third of its cost in just four days of online sales. Raking in $15M “The Interview” has already become Sony’s biggest online success story. It is now their highest grossing online film, ever!
It also earned $2.8M from 331 fearless theatres who decided to feature the movie despite the threats, God bless America.
Sony initially held back the release of the movie because of threats made to theatres if the movie will be shown. This decision was strengthened by the fact that Sony also experienced a cyber attack that released confidential information (like movie scripts and emails). After the threats, the vast majority of movie theatres opted to not show the movie and take a risk regarding the threat.
U.S. President Obama however commented that America should not be afraid to see “The Interview.” The United States is a free country where everyone is entitled to have their own opinion. Obama and the FBI link the attack to North Korea. The North Korean government denied having anything to do with the attacks and a group called “Guardians of Peace” has claimed responsibility.
So why the outrage? Well the comedy, starring Seth Rogen and James Franco, is about two journalists who are asked by the CIA to assassinate North Korea’s dictator Kim Jong-un. We all know that there is nothing funny about North Korea or their dictator.
So the question remains… to rent or buy?