The Interview: You Can Watch This Movie in Select Theaters and Via the Internet

“W hat would the victims of the terrorist acts of September 11, 2001 think about this?” is the first thought which came to my mind when I heard about the debacle concerning the controversy surrounding the decision by Sony Pictures Entertainment to not have The Interview shown in movie theaters across the United States starting on Christmas Day.

Rather than give the background of events which led up to the decision here, Michael of Michael W Travels… gives a synopsis in this article.

Please do not misconstrue the title of this article as an endorsement for the movie. Rather, consider it an act of rebellion from a person who thought this greater than 13 years ago while driving to Atlanta from Augusta on that fateful day:

All I wanted to do…was to find the tallest building and get to the top of it, or fly as a passenger on an airplane. I wanted to shout to the adversaries that if they wanted a war, bring it on, for they will be sorry. I wanted to show those low-life terrorists that they don’t scare me; that our country will only be stronger; and that the United States will be better than ever despite their attempts to destroy it.

Many people in the United States — especially those who are prominent in the entertainment industry — were disappointed and angry when Sony Pictures Entertainment gave in to demands from perpetrators who committed “cyber-attacks” on the movie studio to cancel the premier of The Interview at movie theaters nationwide.

To give a different point of view, please allow me to quote FlyerTalk member SkiAdcock, who posted this comment:

What some folk seem to have forgotten by only focusing on The Interview being pulled, Al Sharpton, etc, is that Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) was hacked, employees (and former employees & contractors) personal information SS#, addresses, health info (although the media didn’t run those thank goodness) put out there and families threatened.

In addition those same employees are now operating on technology (or lack thereof) as though they were in the 60/70s. Sony i-net is still down, files are gone, IT is working 24/7 to get things back to normal. Employees are operating on web-browser emails vs corporate email & on personal computers vs corporate ones. Heck, they can’t even use printers the same way because they were networked. In the past print something from the company desktop, pick it up 2 seconds later. Now it’s save something in word on your personal laptop, save it to pdf, put it on a flash drive, take it to a non-networked printer to print it. Those files that are needed for television shows, airlines, films (and not just Sony films or tv shows), well those now have to go on drives & be couriered or overnighted to others. Everyone is handwriting logs, etc, not only for insurance purposes but to keep track (and it will eventually have to be input once everything is up & running again, further delaying productivity. Items/files that were done & due to other networks are missing. It’s impacting not only Sony, but other corporations who utilized SPE. Deadlines are still expected to be kept even though the modern tools aren’t there. SPE employees are working long hours to compensate in all departments & it’s taking a physical & psychological toll on them.

This was an attack on a major corporation (and yes it could happen to other ones) which is resulting in major losses (in the scheme of things the loss of revenue due to The Interview isn’t that big) in terms of productivity, contracts, television & film releases & the toll on employees work & personal lives.

We have SPE employees who are contributing members of FT. They feel like they’re getting hit from all sides (including from FTers) & they’ve done nothing wrong.

I have to admit that I too was disappointed — and angry as well — not only as a person who has a fledgling acting career on the side; but from the point of view as a traveler. Did the passengers and flight crew members of four airplanes die in vain on September 11, 2001 — not to mention all of the office workers and emergency rescue personnel?

I do not care if the terrorists are Muslim, North Korean, American or any other nationality or religion: while I believe that everyone has a right to express their thoughts in a constructive and informative manner — even through peaceful means such as boycotts, protests and demonstrations to get their voices heard — no one has the right to use threatening tactics meant to frighten and cause disruptions in the lives of innocent people. No one has the right to endanger the lives of innocent people. We have to work together to send a message to those who prefer to use unscrupulous methods to get a point across that their tactics will not work and that we are not afraid of them…

…and a decision came from Sony Pictures Entertainment that The Interview will be shown via the Internet on Christmas Eve; as well as at greater than 200 select independent theaters across the United States on Christmas Day. To me, it does not matter whether or not you watch the movie. Rather, what matters to me is that you have the choice of whether or not you want to watch the movie — just as you should be able to choose where, when and how you want to travel.

If I may add a footnote, one of those theaters where The Interview will be shown is the Plaza Theatre in Atlanta — the theater at which my big screen debut as an actor occurred — with the words FREEDOM PREVAILS in bold red type on the marquee; and I am proud of that on many levels…

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