'The Interview' is online and in theatres

  • Yashwant Raj, Hindustan Times, Washington
  • Updated: Dec 26, 2014 05:07 IST

Americans went to war on Christmas against a distant dictator from the cozy comfort of a darkened cinema theatre for the more adventurous and just their laptop at home for the rest.

"The Interview" opened in select cinemas around the US on Christmas, the day it was supposed to release before the hacking into the network of the company that made it, Sony Pictures.

But the movie released online on YouTube, Playstation and other platforms the day before for rent for around $6 and outright purchase at around $15. This reporter rented it on YouTube.

Security has been stepped up for the showing.

Many are going to watch the movie merely for what it is, a movie. But many others believe they need to send a message - that America won't be cowed down.

"Watching #TheInterview with the whole fam (family)," went a tweet. Another said, "Just bought my Xmas day tickets to see The Interview. Take that @KimJongNumberUn !"

Guardians of Peace, a group that claimed responsibility for the hacking, which has been traced to North Korea by the FBI, has threatened 9/11 style attacks on cinemas that screen it.

Sony had at first capitulated, cancelling the Christmas release, to widespread condemnation but, as it later turned out, it had launched negotiations for an online release.

President Barack Obama had called the cancellation a mistake, saying it set a precedent. Sony had then responded with a lame, "had no choice" after cinemas pulled out.

Obama has welcomed Sony's decision to release it. When asked - he is in Hawaii on vacation - if he will watch The Interview, he thought for a moment and said, "I'm glad it's being released."

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