It has been 10 years since the twisted minds of Trey Parker and Matt Stone (creators of “South Park”) took aim at North Korea’s then-psychopathic leader (dictator) Kim Jong Il and lampooned him in puppet form with “Team America: World Police.” And a lot has changed since then. Apparently North Korea now has the Internet to find out about these things.
North Korea’s new leader apparently doesn’t like being lampooned for American audiences. The recent cyber attacks at Sony Co., which has embarrassed the company with a seemingly never-ending barrage of unflattering in-company emails, allegedly is connected to North Korea. The hacks are allegedly in retaliation toward James Franco’s and Seth Rogan’s comedy “The Interview” in which tabloid journalists are in cahoots with the CIA to assassinate North Korea’s
answer to the Pillsbury Doughboy leader Kim Jong Un, son of film buff/tyrant Kim Jong Il.
On Wednesday, feeling the pressure from theaters that decided to pull the film after the hacking group (ironically named Guardians of Peace) threatened a 9/11-style retaliation for those who dare sit in a movie theater and chuckle at the expense of North Korea’s president — a man known for such sophisticated tastes such as hanging out with Dennis Rodman — Sony decided to pull the release all together for the time being.
What does that mean? At this point, only the folks at Sony know. What I think will happen is that, due to these hackers and the subsequent media frenzy, this film will now be much more popular and make more money than if they hadn’t bothered to bully the company into not releasing it on its intended day in the first place.
So yeah, this whole thing has gotten very weird.
UPDATE: Sony has apparently shelved “The Interview.” In response to this whole fiasco, Alamo Drafthouse announced it was going to screen “Team America” in place of “The Interview.” This has been shutdown by Paramount for undisclosed reasons. Also, everyone from Steve Carell to Mitt Romney have made their feelings known about this situation via Twitter, thus making this the weirdest event in pop culture for 2014.