Entire Contents of Sony Hack Now Available On Wikileaks

The contents of last year’s infamous Sony Pictures hack have been published on Wikileaks in their entirety, with the whistleblowing website setting up a searchable archive of over 30,000 documents and 170,000 internal company e-mails.

The hacking of Sony Pictures Entertainment was launched on 24th November, 2014 by an activist group calling itself “Guardians of Peace” in protest at the imminent release of Seth Rogen and James Franco comedy The Interview, which centred around an assassination attempt on North Korean ruler Kim Jong-un by two journalists. The US government maintains that the attack was perpetrated by the North Korean government, despite flimsy evidence.

In the aftermath, Sony Pictures co-chairman Amy Pascal lost her job after the release of e-mails in which she mocked films with black casts, and Kevin Hart specifically, though her e-mail partner, Scott Rudin, escaped with just an apology, despite also being found to call Angelina Jolie a “minimally talented spoiled brat” in an internal memo.

The Guardians of Peace threatened to attack any US cinema that screened The Interview, scaring Sony into pulling the film from its slated Christmas release, though a U-turn followed, with a limited release over the festive period, proving the GoP threats to be empty. Now that the dust has settled, the GoP has fallen silent, and Sony execs have been embarrassed, Wikileaks feels it appropriate to make this information public domain.

Though the political value of the documents appears negligible, Julian Assange, founder and editor-in-chief of Wikileaks, claims that a number of internal e-mails demonstrate collusion between Hollywood and the US government.

Assange said, “This archive shows the inner workings of an influential multinational corporation. It is newsworthy and at the centre of a geopolitical conflict. It belongs in the public domain. WikiLeaks will ensure it stays there.”

Thank you The Guardian for providing us with this information.

FBI Thought Joke Was a Threat Against CNN

During the aftermath of the Sony Pictures hack, while perpetrators Guardians of Peace (GOP) were threatening terror attacks against anyone screening or viewing comedy movie The Interview, the FBI released a statement saying that threats had also been made against a US media outlet. The threat in question was part of a Pastebin post, claiming to be from GOP, demanding, “You have 24 hours to give us the Wolf”, referring to CNN news anchor Wolf Blitzer. It has now been revealed that the post was a hoax by web security expert David Garrett, Jr..

https://twitter.com/DavidGarrettJr/status/550351431623254016

https://twitter.com/DavidGarrettJr/status/550351600641142784

Garrett Jr. admitted to the post, and that it was just a hoax, the moment it was revealed that the FBI were investigating it, but still had to speak to FBI officials on New Year’s Day.

https://twitter.com/DavidGarrettJr/status/550662252194713602

Garrett Jr. told Fusion in an interview that “[The FBI] said basically that, in the future, it’s a good idea not to pretend to be someone they’re investigating.”

Source: Gizmodo

The Interview is Sony’s Most Downloaded Movie – Making $15m

The Interview is doing alright online, raking back a third of its crazy $44 million budget. It’s also Sony’s most downloaded movie ever.

“Considering the incredibly challenging circumstances, we are extremely grateful to the people all over the country who came out to experience The Interview on the first day of its unconventional release,” – Rory Bruer, Sony’s President of Global Distribution in a statement to The Wrap following the movie’s opening.

Sony will certainly be interested in these figures. Analysts have suggested that the company could lose billions of dollars due to the hack – something an already struggling Sony doesn’t need. It’s questionable as to how much money the movie will make online and in such a limited number of cinemas.

This figure also poses something else – what will the non-theatrical release of this major motion picture mean for the future of cinema? We’ve seen movies released to DVD/Blu-Ray and downloads sooner and sooner following their theatrical release. We’ve also seen movie studios expressing interest in cutting out cinema releases altogether in an attempt to curb piracy. So does the modestly successful online release of The Interview further compound the beliefs of those who think we should say goodbye to cinema?

Source: BBC News

North Korea Threatens to Blow Up the White House

In a totally reasonable and not at all childish reaction to a comedy movie, North Korea has threatened to bomb the White House in retaliation for the release of the Seth Rogen film The Interview.

After the Sony Pictures hack last month, the group claiming responsibility threatened Sony not to release The Interview – a comedy about two journalists attempting to assassinate North Korean leader Kim Jong-un – else they would release confidential information gathered from the hack, and even attack any cinema that dared screen the film.

After initial reticence, Sony did release the movie over Christmas, both online and to a limited cinema run, and North Korea is not happy. In a statement published by state-run Korean Central News Agency, North Korea’s Policy Department of the National Defence Commission said:

“The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) has already launched the toughest counteraction. Nothing is more serious miscalculation than guessing that just a single movie production company is the target of this counteraction. Our target is all the citadels of the U.S. imperialists who earned the bitterest grudge of all Koreans.

The army and people of the DPRK are fully ready to stand in confrontation with the U.S. in all war spaces including cyber warfare space to blow up those citadels.

Our toughest counteraction will be boldly taken against the White House, the Pentagon and the whole U.S. mainland, the cesspool of terrorism, by far surpassing the “symmetric counteraction” declared by Obama.

The U.S. should reflect on its evil doings that put itself in such a trouble, apologize to the Koreans and other people of the world and should not dare pull up others. “

So, unless the US government apologises for a movie it had no hand in producing, North Korea will blow up the White House, presumably with its nefarious moon-mounted space laser. Sounds fair.

Source: We Are Anonymous

Sony to be Sued for Pirating Music in The Interview

In an ironic reversal, a musician whose music was used in controversial comedy movie The Interview is threatening to sue Sony.

Yoon Mi-rae, a US-born hip-hip artist, was in negotiation Sony to have her track Pay Day included in the soundtrack to The Interview. When negotiations ceased without resolution, Yoon and her management assumed that the deal was off. That was until she discovered that the song had featured in the film, without her permission.

“There were initial discussions for using ‘Pay Day‘ in the movie, but at some point, the discussions ceased and we assumed that it would not follow through,” Feel Ghood Music, Yoon’s record label, said. “However, after the movie was released, we learned that the track had been used without permission, legal procedure, or contracts.”

The label followed, “We will be taking legal action against Sony Pictures as well as DFSB, the agency that had been carrying out the discussion regarding the use of the track.”

Source: Torrent Freak

iTunes to Offer The Interview Too

Just a few days after it was reported that Apple declined streaming ‘The Interview’, Apple has just confirmed that it will indeed be offering the movie.

According to Re/code, an Apple representative informed them that the movie will be available from 1pm EST for streaming and downloading. This means that the movie will be available on many of the big streaming platforms, including iTunes, Google Play and YouTube.

Sony said that they intended to deliver the movie on a “different platform” following their decision to pull it from its Christmas Day release. The company did say that no streaming or download service had initially come forward with an offer to provide the movie, but now that’s obviously a different story. The movie did also see its cinematic release, but only in  handful of venues.

Source: Re/code

“Monkey” Obama Behind Internet Outage, According to North Korea

North Korea has blamed the US of taking down its internet services over the Christmas period and, in a gesture of unbridled racism, branded President Barack Obama “a monkey”. The US is accused of retaliating for the Sony Picture hack, and attack attributed to North Korea, which stems from dissent regarding the movie The Interview, a comedy in which two journalists attempt to assassinate North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.

An unnamed spokesperson from the National Defense Commission, a governing body controlled by Kim Jong-un, released a statement to the official Korean Central News Agency on Saturday, with harsh words aimed at the US President: “Obama always goes reckless in words and deeds like a monkey in a tropical forest.”

The spokesperson continued: “the U.S., a big country, started disturbing the Internet operation of major media of the DPRK, not knowing shame like children playing a tag.”

The National Defense Commission even went so far as to accuse the US Government of producing The Interview as a reflection of its hostile attitude toward North Korea.

The White House is yet to respond to the statement.

Source: Mashable

Obama Criticises Sony For Pulling ‘The Interview’

During his end-of-year address, US President Barack Obama spoke about Sony’s decision to pull The Interview from cinemas following threats from hacker group Guardians of Peace. Obama considers the move “a mistake”.

“We cannot have a society in which some dictator someplace can start imposing censorship here in the United States,” President Obama said. “If somebody is able to intimidate folks out of releasing a satirical movie, imagine what they start doing if they see a documentary they don’t like or news reports they don’t like. Or even worse, imagine if producers or distributors start engaging in self-censorship because they don’t want to offend the sensibilities of someone whose sensibilities probably need to be offended. That’s not who we are. That’s not what America’s about.”

Obama also had a dig at North Korea. He quipped, “it says something interesting about North Korea that it decided to have the state mount an all-out assault against a satirical film starring Seth Rogen.”

Source: Engadget

Sony Pulls ‘The Interview’ From Cinemas After Hacker Threats

The Interview, the film that supposedly motivated the massive hack of Sony Pictures, has been pulled from its Christmas Day release after terrorist threats by the hackers.

At the end of November, a hacker collective known as Guardians of Peace compromised Sony’s servers, stealing over 100 terabytes-worth of data, including internal documents, personal e-mails, and a number of video files of as-yet-unreleased films, many of which have leaked online.

Two days ago, Guardians of Peace threatened to take action against any cinema that screened The Interview, a comedy about the attempted assassination of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. By yesterday, AMC Theaters, Carmike Cinemas, Cinemark, and Regal Entertainment all announced that they would not be screening the film for safety reasons. This motivated Sony Pictures to pull the film entirely from cinematic distribution.

Sony’s statement said: “We respect and understand our partners’ decision and, of course, completely share their paramount interest in the safety of employees and theater-goers.”

Sony has not indicated if or when release of The Interview will be rescheduled.

Source: New York Times

Reddit Bans Users for Sharing Leaked Sony Documents

After receiving a number of takedown requests, reddit has started banning users found to have been sharing documents from the recent Sony hack. The documents include internal documents, e-mails, video files, and employee data. Over 200 gigabytes of the 100 terabytes of stolen information has been shared on the SonyGOP subreddit. The subreddit has also been suspended.

The hack, which happened at the end of November, was perpetrated by a group calling itself ‘Guardians of Peace’. The hackers are believed to have launched the attack in protest at the forthcoming Sony-produced movie, The Interview, starring Seth Rogan and James Franco. The comedy film is about a pair of journalists, played by Rogan and Franco, who are co-opted by the US government to assassinate North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. ‘Guardians of Peace’ have threatened violent action against any cinema that screens the film.

In addition to petitioning reddit, Sony is also pressuring news outlets to abstain from posting details of the leaks, threatening legal action against any organisation that denies the request.

Source: Business Insider

Sony Hackers Threaten to Attack Screenings of ‘The Interview’

‘Guardians of Peace’, the group claiming responsibility for the recent Sony hack, has warned that anyone planning to watch the ‘The Interview’ – the comedy film about an attempted assassination of Kim Jong-un that seems to have motivated the attack in the first place – could be putting themselves in great danger.

Someone claiming affiliation with ‘Guardians of Peace’ posted the following message to Pastebin:

We will clearly show it to you at the very time and places “The Interview” be shown, including the premiere, how bitter fate those who seek fun in terror should be doomed to. Soon all the world will see what an awful movie Sony Pictures Entertainment has made.

The world will be full of fear.

Remember the 11th of September 2001.

We recommend you to keep yourself distant from the places at that time.

(If your house is nearby, you’d better leave.)

Whatever comes in the coming days is called by the greed of Sony Pictures Entertainment.

All the world will denounce the SONY.

‘Guardians of Peace’ have already promised a series of “Christmas presents” for Sony, thought to include the release of Sony Pictures CEO Michael Lynton’s personal e-mails.

Source: Ars Technica