Just when we thought the Sony hack scandal was over, the saga continues.
The Guardians of Peace, the hackers responsible for the hacks that began in late November, sent Sony executives another email last night. They threatened that they would release more data if the studio doesn't erase all proof that the The Interview ever existed.
"It's very wise that you have made the decision to cancel the release of The Interview. It will be very useful for you," the hackers said in a message to Sony. "We will ensure the security of your data unless you make additional trouble."
It seems like pulling the film about the assassination of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un wasn't enough to please the North Korean government. In the new list of demands, Sony must not release the Seth Rogen and James Franco film online or on DVD.
"Now we want you never let the movie released, distributed or leaked in any form of, for instance, DVD or piracy," the message reportedly said. "And we want everything related to the movie, including its trailers, as well as its full version down from any website hosting them immediately."
Even if Sony listens to the hackers' demands, it is impossible to pull "everything related to the movie" (including this article?) from the Internet. The demand also means that Sony Pictures may continued to be blackmailed and censor itself in fear that more of Hollywood's top secrets will be spilled, further fueling the discussion of freedom of expression here in the U.S.
President Obama addressed the threat, telling Americans that his "recommendation would be that people go to the movies" before the film was officially cancelled. On Friday, the President said pulling the movie was a mistake, wishing Sony would have spoken to him first.
The Guardians of Peace began leaking thousands of emails from top Sony executives as well as getting access to both former and current employee information.
Because of the new threats, it is unclear whether activists will continue their plan to smuggle The Interview DVDs into North Korea via air balloons since the movie may never make it to disk.