Before the world premiere of "The Interview," the controversial new comedy starring Seth Rogen and James Franco that may or may not have sparked a widespread hacking of Sony Pictures' computer data, Rogen praised Sony co-chairman Amy Pascal for following through with the film. As Reuters previously reported, Sony had serious discussions about toning down a key sequence in "The Interview." That scene still exists in the film, though it was altered.
"Before we start this, honestly, we just want to thank Amy Pascal for having the balls to make this fucking thing!" Rogen said to the audience. It was pretty much all he was allowed to say. Sony had announced on Wednesday night that it would not permit red carpet interviews at the premiere. "If you're going to ask me questions, I'm going to run away!" Rogen said to Variety reporter Dave McNary before the screening began. (According to McNary, Rogen did bolt from his presence soon after.)
Though Sony didn't explicitly blame the hack as the reason for curtailing premiere press, it has caused the studio much consternation over the last week. Emails between Pascal and producer Scott Rudin leaked out, some of which included jokes made about the types of movies President Barack Obama might enjoy watching. (Pascal and Rudin landed on films with predominantly black casts: "Lee Daniels' The Butler," "12 Years A Slave" and "Ride Along.")
"The content of my emails were insensitive and inappropriate but are not an accurate reflection of who I am," Pascal said in a statement provided to The Huffington Post. "Although this was a private communication that was stolen, I accept full responsibility for what I wrote and apologize to everyone who was offended."
"I'd be surprised if my entire legacy was based on the leak of the email exchange," Pascal told Sharon Waxman in an interview with TheWrap. "Really what I'm focused on is looking forward to the future. These times can be quite transformative."