Sony hackers threaten terror attack over ‘The Interview’

Seth Rogen and James Franco talking in The Interview

“The world will be full of fear. Remember the 11th of September 2001.”

The hacking group behind the ongoing leak of documents from Sony Pictures Entertainment appears to have made a significant new warning, threatening a terrorist attack against screenings of upcoming film The Interview.

The Interview, starring Seth Rogen and James Franco and revolving around a fictional assassination attempt on the North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un, has repeatedly drawn the ire of the hackers, who call themselves the Guardians of Peace, or GOP—leading some to speculate that North Korea or North Korean–affiliated hackers are behind the attack.

The authoritarian and secretive state claims to have no affiliation with the group, though they have praised its work—the dumping of hundreds of gigabytes of highly sensitive internal company data, including executive emails, film screeners, expense reports, and employee information.

“We will clearly show it to you at the very time and places ‘The Interview’ will be shown,” the latest message warns, “including the premiere, how bitter fate those who seek fun in terror should be doomed to.”

“The world will be full of fear,” it goes on. “Remember the 11th of September 2001. We recommend you keep yourself distant from the places at that time.”

“Whatever comes in the coming days is called by the greed of Sony Pictures Entertainment,” the message ends. “All the world will denounce the SONY.” 

The message is accompanied by what appears to be an archive of emails of CEO Michael Lynton.

The FBI confirmed to the Daily Dot that they are aware of the threat and that an “investigation is ongoing,” but refused to comment on whether they are treating it as a terrorist threat. North Korea refused to comment, hanging up when the Daily Dot made inquiries with its embassy at the United Nations.

Photo via The Interview

Rob Price

Rob Price

Rob Price is a technology and politics reporter who served as the U.K.-based morning editor for the Daily Dot until 2014. He now works as the news editor for Business Insider, and his work has appeared in Vice, Slate, the Washington Post, and the Independent.