Sony Pictures allows cinemas to show The Interview

A billboard for the film The Interview is displayed on Dec19 in Venice, California. Sony first cancelled but today said it had authorised the release of the film after a hacking scandal that exposed sensitive internal Sony communications, and threate
A billboard for the film The Interview is displayed on Dec19 in Venice, California. Sony first cancelled but today said it had authorised the release of the film after a hacking scandal that exposed sensitive internal Sony communications, and threatened to attack theaters showing the movie. -- PHOTO: AFP

LOS ANGELES (REUTERS/AFP) – Sony Pictures said on Tuesday that The Interview will have a limited theatrical release in the United States on Christmas Day and the studio is looking for more options to screen the film that prompted a cyberattack on Sony.

“We have never given up on releasing The Interview and we’re excited our movie will be in a number of theaters on Christmas Day,” Sony Pictures chief executive Michael Lynton said in a statement.

“At the same time, we are continuing our efforts to secure more platforms and more theatres so that this movie reaches the largest possible audience.”

In social media posts, The Drafthouse in Alamo, Texas, and the Plaza Atlanta in Georgia said Tuesday they would show the movie, which lampoons North Korean dictator Kim Jong-Un. The film stars Seth Rogen and James Franco as a pair of television journalists who are directed to kill Kim by the Central Intelligence Agency.

An estimated 80 per cent of the cinemas in the US and Canada last week refused to show movie after a group that claimed to have hacked Sony threatened to stage terror attacks where it was screened.

Sony subsequently cancelled the movie’s release and pulled trailers and marketing materials while Rogen and Franco called off publicity appearances.

Then Sony came under criticism, including from US President Barack Obama, for caving into pressure from the hackers.

“Freedom has prevailed!” Rogen said on his Twitter page Tuesday. “Sony didn’t give up!”

The Wrap reported that Sony also plans to release the film via video-on-demand.