And the penny drops:

Of course.

From Bloomberg:

“We have never given up on releasing ‘The Interview’ and we’re excited our movie will be in a number of theaters on Christmas Day,” Michael Lynton, chief executive officer of Sony Entertainment, said in a statement today. “We are continuing our efforts to secure more platforms and more theaters so that this movie reaches the largest possible audience.”

The studio scrapped the Dec. 25 debut after the four biggest U.S. theater chains took the movie off their schedule, a response to threats from hackers linked to North Korea. President Barack Obama said last week the studio’s capitulation to terrorists would hinder freedom of expression.

“As the President made clear, we are a country that believes in free speech, and the right of artistic expression,” White House spokesman Eric Schultz said today in a statement. “The decision made by Sony and participating theaters allows people to make their own choices about the film, and we welcome that outcome.”

Of course, everything Sony is saying here is complete garbage. I don’t believe for a second that it was Sony’s intention to get creative with its release strategy; I give credit for this not to the execs involved but to the owners and operators of independent theatres like the Alamo Drafthouse, who took matters into their own hands, offered to screen the film, and when that didn’t work out, attempted to screen something just as subversive and rude as “The Interview.”

But…could it be…just a brilliant marketing strategy??

If it is a marketing stunt, it’s working:

While I think that this “limited release” amounts to Sony making lemonade out of a tub of lemons it imposed upon itself, I don’t think the overall controversy, threat, and cancellation is part of a grand scheme to make a few extra dollars. Orchestrating something like this would likely involve more risk than a major corporation like Sony would be willing to take on, considering the possibility for fallout if it failed. Major theatre chains like AMC and Regal are still refusing to show the film, so if this is a stunt, it’s a stunt that’s lost them access to over half the market.

Did Sony do a cowardly thing? Yes. Has the company responded to the outrage of its customer base? Yes. Does that customer base know that Sony is full of it? Also yes.

Will I be going to see “The Interview” this month?

…big yes.


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