The Sony Hack: From a Funny Leak to a Horrifying Precedent
I avoid politics on my film blog because it very rarely has a place being here. However recently it has become such an all-consuming part of the film news world I thought I should chime in. Then a few days ago Sony had pulled the release of ‘The Interview’ from worldwide screenings. Bringing both my film nerd side and my political nerd side crashing together to form this post. I will discuss what happened, theory on why and my views on it happening.
First I’d like to say that I understand the cinemas that pulled the film from being screened, the threat was aimed at your customers and staff and in recent years there have been terrifying attacks in US cinemas. One in particular comes to mind in the memory of the shooting at a premier screening of The Dark Knight Rises.
So I do understand and get the fear that is felt. However I have to applaud a few cinemas in Texas that I believe even after Sony pulled the film ‘The Interview’ are going to show ‘Team America World Police’ just to spite the Hackers. Bravo I say. I think I may even review that film myself this week for the same reason.
Now from Sony’s side they really shouldn’t have caved in. If I was head at Sony I’d release ‘The Interview’ for free online and make five smaller indie films for next year all about Kim Jong-Un. You can never give into “do it or else” demands, because it sets a horrifying precedent for the future. The world now knows that this behaviour works and that really worries me.
But what I think is even worse is that I think people will shy away from making anything satirical about world leaders, anything that criticises them or points out the lunacy of their rule. Imagine if this worked when Charlie Chaplin made ‘The Great Dictator’. Now am not saying ‘The Interview’ is hard hitting poignant stuff but in basic principle it’s the same and it makes me sad to think what this means for future films
We wouldn’t stop watching ‘The Great Dictator’ just because Hitler wasn’t a big fan.