It seems that the powers that be in North Korea still harbor some negative feelings over the Seth Rogen comedy, The Interview.
On Sunday, Noth Korean officials threatened to blow up any balloons that float over their borders carrying DVD copies of The Interview. According to Yahoo News, North Korean front line military units gave a notice to South Korea which read in part, “All the firepower strike means of the frontline units of the (Korean People’s Army) will launch without prior warning… to blow up balloons.”
It may be tempting to assume that North Korean is overreacting at nothing at all, but this time they are reacting to a very real event.
North Korean defector Park Sang-hak is the source of North Korea’s renewed fury of The Interview. According to Raw Story, Park and a merry band of activists intend to launch balloons carrying 10,000 copies of The Interview on DVD and USB and 500,000 propaganda leaflets destined for citizens of North Korea.
“I just want them to know the truth about Kim Jong Un and the world we are living in,” Park said. “Overthrowing the regime is what the North Korean people should do.”
This isn’t the first time activists have sent balloons carrying bootleg media across the border. According to Raw Story, activists sent balloons of an unidentified movie over the border in October. North Korean soldiers opened fire on the balloons, and the North Korean government withdrew from peace talks in response to the incident.
The Interview was at the center of the massive Sony Pictures Entertainment hack scandal in November and December of 2014. Hackers reportedly hired by or representing North Korea invaded the computer infrastructure of Sony Pictures Entertainment, the studio behind The Interview. Hackers stole and released employee’s private information.
As previously reported by the Inquisitr, the National Association of Theater Owners, estimated that Sony Pictures Entertainment lost $30 million on The Interview after the massive hacking and threats of acts of terrorism forced the studio to abandon the theatrical release of The Interview in favor of a release via on-demand and streaming services.
North Korea doesn’t need to worry about their citizens being incited to riot by bootleg copies of a poorly received comedy. According to The Guardian, officials in South Korean have vowed to stop any balloon launch of The Interview DVDs from their borders. The South Korean government sees the launch not as a humanitarian mission, but as an unnecessary provocation that will but it’s citizens at risk. The South Korea unification ministry noted that there is a limit to free speech.