Skip To Content
Get Our Newsletter
JEWISH. INDEPENDENT. NONPROFIT.

Support the Forward

Funded by readers like you DonateSubscribe

Barack Obama Says Sony Should’ve Stuck With ‘The Interview’

President Barack Obama on Friday said Sony Pictures “made a mistake” in pulling the Seth Rogen satirical film “The Interview” after suffering a devastating cyberattack blamed on North Korea.

“I wish they (Sony) would have spoken to me first,” Obama said at a news conference. “I would have told them, ‘Do not get into a pattern in which you’re intimidated by these kinds of criminal attacks.’”

Obama made the remarks after the Federal Bureau of Investigation said North Korea was behind the cyberattack over the film about a fictional plot to assassinate North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

The Sony Corp unit canceled the Christmas Day release of the film starring Seth Rogen and James Franco after large cinema chains refused to screen due to unspecified threats by hackers.

Asked about Sony’s decision, Obama said, “Yes, I think they made a mistake.” He said Sony’s decision sent a bad signal about self-censorship in the entertainment industry.

“We cannot have a society in which some dictator someplace can start imposing censorship here in the United States,” the president said. “Because if somebody is able to intimidate folks out of releasing a satirical movie, imagine what they start doing when they see a documentary that they don’t like, or news reports that they don’t like.”

The hackers released embarrassing emails between Sony Pictures co-chair Amy Pascal and producer Scott Rudin joking in a racially insensitive manner about Obama’s film tastes.

Both Pascal and Rudin have publicly apologized.

Engage

  • SHARE YOUR FEEDBACK

  • UPCOMING EVENT

Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free under an Attribution-Non Commercial-No Derivatives Creative Commons license as long as you follow our republishing guidelines, which require that you credit Foward and retain our pixel. See our full guidelines for more information.

To republish, copy the HTML, which includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline, and credit to Foward. Have questions? Please email us at help@forward.com.

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.