Ever since it was first conceived, Seth Rogen and James Franco’s satire The Interview was always primed to attract controversy, but over the last few days that controversy has snowballed out of control. In light of a hacking attempt that has allegedly been linked back to North Korea, one which threatened to blow up any movie theater that dared to screen it, Sony Pictures opted to pull the film in its entirety followed by the cancellation of its planned premiere in New York.
And now, we understand that the studio’s rapid cull will result in cutting the VOD and DVD release of The Interview, after Sony revealed that it has “no further plans” for Rogen and Franco’s seemingly doomed project.
As things stand, Sony is poised to lose close to $42 million that the studio invested in the development and marketing of the film. Before today’s news, it was believed that they would seek a means of recouping some of this budget through a video-on-demand release, but it appears the film won’t see the light of day via Sony, if at all.
At this stage, it’s unclear whether the pairing actors — who star as two bumbling news reporters tasked with assassinating Kim Jong-un, hence the controversy — will shop the property to other distributors in the hope that it will find a new home. But after Tuesday’s terrorist threats, which came by way of a hacker group known only as the “Guardians of Peace,” it’s likely that The Interview will struggle to free itself from the shackles of this most unprecedented controversy.