Sony Pictures Entertainment has chosen to stand down for “The Interview,” deciding against releasing the Seth Rogen-James Franco comedy in any form — including VOD or DVD, as U.S. officials reportedly link Sony’s massive cyber attack to North Korea.
“Sony Pictures has no further release plans for the film,” a spokesman said Wednesday.
The studio issued the statement a few hours after pulling the planned Christmas Day release of “The Interview” in the U.S. in response to the hackers who threatened a 9/11-style attack against U.S. theaters and moviegoers if the comedy were released.
By late Wednesday afternoon, the studio had removed any mention of “The Interview” from its official web site.
The move could open the door for Sony to sell the rights to a rival distributor — though Hollywood is still reeling from Tuesday’s invocation of a possible terrorist attack on exhibitors if they screened “The Interview.”
Prior to the decision to pull the controversial movie, a Sony Pictures insider had told Variety that the studio was weighing releasing the film on premium video-on-demand. Such a move would have allowed the studio to recoup some of the film’s $42 million budget and tens of millions in promotion and advertising expenditures.