Never before has a film produced by Sony Pictures been so successful online, and we're not talking about illegal downloading here. The Interview has been rented or bought online 4.3 million times and has already reported nearly $ 31 million (€ 26 million) between December 24 and January 4.
To this sum, it is necessary to add the revenues of around 5 million dollars from a show in several hundred North American theaters to reach a total of around 36 million dollars (30 M €). It is however a film which cost around 75 million dollars (63 M €) to produce and market.
On December 24, The Interview was released in HD on Google Play, YouTube Movies, Xbox Video from Microsoft and a dedicated site SeeTheInterview.com for € 5.99 for rental and $ 14.99 for sale, then later on Apple iTunes. At Christmas, more than 300 cinemas in the United States followed, and to date a total of 580 theaters in North America.
This comedy – on a plan fomented by the CIA in order to assassinate the leader of North Korea Kim Jong-un within the framework of an interview obtained by a presenter of talk show and its producer – would have been in the middle of the piracy Sony Pictures IT in December and for which the American authorities hold North Korea responsible.
During the maneuver, the Guardian of Peace hackers had brandished a threat of attacks on the cinemas which would broadcast the film. At first, Sony Pictures had canceled the release of the film – including online – before changing its mind.
It is a real dupe game in that the threat of attacks has never been considered credible by the United States Department of Homeland Security. The motivation of hackers around the film The Interview is also debated and several security experts are not convinced of the involvement of North Korea (or at least its degree of involvement).
Sony boss speaks for the first timeDuring Sony's press conference at CES 2015, CEO Kazuo Hirai took a few minutes to speak about the hacking of his subsidiary established in American soil and the broadcasting of the film The Interview.
The Guardians of Peace have stripped Sony Pictures of sensitive data and information, and a series of embarrassing revelations have resulted from the hacking of the computer network. For Kazuo Hirai, Sony and " current or former employees " have been " victims of one of the most vicious and malicious cyber attacks in recent history. "
The boss of Sony said he was very proud of all the employees but also of the partners who " stood firm against extortion of criminals and worked tirelessly "to allow the release of The Interview.
"I must say that freedom of speech, freedom of expression, freedom of association are very important values for Sony and our entertainment business"
, he added.