The Interview was pulled from U.S. theaters in response to a threat from hackers. This episode includes a discussion with Mashable's Christina Warren and audio from (as of this posting) the final public screening Q&A with writer/directors Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg.
Just before this episode was posted, independent theaters in the U.S. have confirmed Sony is allowing them to screen the movie on Christmas Day, with a simultaneous VOD announcement coming shortly. ESN will publish the uncut ButtNumbAThon Q&A audio on Christmas Day as Screen Time episode 57.
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- Christina Warren is Senior Tech Analyst for Mashable and co-hosts Overtired on ESN. She wrote a 6000-word piece on the breakdown of Sony's Steve Jobs movie (now Universal's) written by Aaron Sorkin.
With Special Guest Stars
- Harry Knowles (twitter) is founder and Head Geek at Ain't It Cool News. His "BNAT" screening of The Interview was, to date, the last time the movie was screened in public. Before the show began, confetti rained down on the audience and North Korean flags were unfurled along the theater walls. His show Ain't It Cool With Harry Knowles premieres on Austin's KLRU in February 2015.
- Seth Rogen (IMDb) and Evan Goldberg (IMDb) wrote and directed The Interview, and have received a pilot order from AMC for their adaptation of Garth Ennis' epic comicbook saga Preacher.
- Randall Park (IMDb) plays Kim Jong-Un in The Interview, stars in upcoming sitcom Fresh Off the Boat. You may have recently seen him in Neighbors opposite Zac Efron or as Danny Chung on HBO's Veep.
- Diana Bang (IMDb) plays Sook Yung Park in The Interview, her part effectively that of Kim Jong-Un's chief propagandist. She gives a breakout performance only briefly glimpsed in promo videos, where she's seen firing an enormous weapon and, in some cuts, shouting "how many times can the U.S. make the same mistake?!" answered by James Franco, "As many times as it takes!"
- Barack Obama is the 44th President of the United States of America.
- Katy Perry is, according to co-writer/director Seth Rogen, "cool as a motherfucker, straight up".
- Screen Time 57 (posting 25 December 2014): uncut audio from the BNAT 16 Q&A with Rogen and Goldberg, most of which is excerpted in this episode. It is full of spoilers and disclaimed as such.
- If you subscribe to the Electric Shadow Channel feed, it includes all Screen Time extended interviews as well as Electric Shadow-related extras and deleted bits.
Show Notes and Links
- Butt Numb A Thon is a 24-hour movie marathon programmed in secret every year by Ain't It Cool News founder (and friend of the show) Harry Knowles.
- All Quiet on the Western Front screenings were disrupted by the Nazis with stink bombs and...mice? Yes, mice.
- The Great Dictator will be the focus of upcoming episode of Criterion Collected (Criterion Collected #5)
- I tweeted as much just after the screening of The Interview, but having seen that movie, Rogen and Goldberg are the right guys to adapt Preacher for TV.
- The Hays Code
- McCarthy and the Blacklist
- The trailer that includes Kim and Dave Skylark (Franco) bonding over Katy Perry.
- President Obama on the choice to pull The Interview.
- Sunday, 14 December: the Sony hackers released more data, promising a "Merry Christmas"
- Monday, 15 December: Rogen goes on Stern, Gawker reaches a new low, posting a clip from the very end of the movie that you should not seek out for the sake of not spoiling the movie
- Tuesday, 16 December: Carmike Cinemas drops The Interview, and the New York premiere is cancelled
- Wednesday, 17 December: four promo screenings are cancelled by the respective theater chains, followed by the U.S.'s five major chains canceling all bookings of The Interview, citing safety concerns on what, for them, is "the Super Bowl of movie holidays". 2.5 hours later, Sony canceled the entire release. The rest of Hollywood wasn't thrilled with this. A couple hours after that, Aaron Sorkin called Christina and other journalists "terrorists" in line with whoever was behind the hacks. Various theaters planned screenings of Team America: World Police. Sony went on the record saying they had "no further plans" to release The Interview, on VOD or otherwise.
- Thursday, 18 December: Paramount Pictures cancels all screenings of ten-year-old satire Team America nationwide.
- Friday, 19 December: The FBI state that North Korea is in some way behind the hack, with no further substantiation. IT professionals and "tech" types are widely undeterred by the assumption the hack was somehow a result of Sony having a disgruntled former IT worker. President Obama labels the choice to cancel The Interview's release "a mistake" in his final press conference of the year. The Interview promo merchandise starts going for insane premiums on eBay. The question of whether or how Sony could have released The Interview becomes the new hot topic of conversation.
- Saturday, 20 December: Sony pulls all social media and digital advertising for The Interview from the internet, as ordered by their hackers.
- Monday, 22 December: North Korea refuses to participate in U.N. Security Council deliberations regarding their human rights record.
- Tuesday, 23 December: Just as this episode was set to post, independent theaters including Austin's Alamo Drafthouse announce that Sony is, in fact, allowing them to screen The Interview on Christmas Day.