by Tayyabal Riaz
Over the past few weeks, the scandal of a cyber attack on Sony Pictures has been gaining momentum. 24th November saw a warning from a hacking group, which calls itself Guardians of Peace, threatening to release personal correspondence between the bigwigs of Hollywood, if the movie titled ‘The Interview’ isn’t pulled out of release schedules. This correspondence includes salaries and holding more controversial substance; personal communication between directors and actors amongst other personnel. These communications included inappropriate comments on African Americans, generally and President Obama.
The movie focuses on two CIA agents, on a mission to assassinate Kim Jong-un. Having comic successes such as Borat in the past, Tinsletown was wrong to think North Korea would not retaliate and let it brush under the carpet, as observed in the past. Threats of violence against theatres screening the movie were issued. North Korea steps up its reaction, promised a “merciless response” warning the US government that release of the film would be seen as an “act of war.” Sony resorted to withdrawing theatrical or DVD release of the movie.
George Clooney went as far as producing a petition, which to his frustration, not many were interested in signing. Clooney, in an interview with Deadline, hopes the movie will be released in some format, “Do whatever you can to get this movie out. Not because everybody has to see the movie, but because I’m not going to be told we can’t see the movie. That’s the most important part. We cannot be told we can’t see something by Kim Jong-un, of all f****ng people … we have allowed North Korea to dictate content, and that is just insane.”
Hollywood resorted to social media in order to respond, calling Sony’s actions as ‘cowardice’ and ‘un-American’. Bill Maher, hashtagged ‘PussyNation’, whilst Piers Morgan tweeted that ‘cyber-terrorists win’.