NEWS

The Interview fallout: Toronto man campaigns for local screening

12/19/2014 01:30 EST | Updated 02/18/2015 05:59 EST
As billboards and posters for the The Interview are being taken down all over the city, one man is mounting a publicity campaign to screen the movie — even as the studio has cancelled its release in the wake of threats.

Taylor Scollon is asking Sony Pictures to give a copy of The Interview to him so he can screen it in Toronto. He is planning to charge $20 for admission, which he would donate to the group Liberty in North Korea.

"I don't even know if it's a good movie," he wrote on Facebook. "But I think we should try to screen it anyway."

He is doing it in the name of democracy, he says. 

"I think that if we can raise some awareness about the ongoing humanitarian problems in North Korea, and hopefully raise some money as well for Liberty in North Korea, it will be a successful event," he said.

The film was cancelled by the studio after hackers threatened attacks on theatres if it was released. The FBI has implicated North Korea as being responsible for the threats.

The Interview depicts North Korean leader Kim Jong-un dying in an explosion, and the plot revolves a CIA plot to assassinate him. 

"It'd be great if Sony ended up letting people see the movie, maybe releasing it online," said Scollon, who calls the North Korean leader "insane."

"Hopefully it gets out there in some way."

Scollon does not have a venue for the film, however The Royal Cinema, a repertory film house on College Street, inquired about hosting it. Scollon or the Royal haven't said whether or not they would screen a pirated or leaked copy of the film.

Scollon has used Twitter to ask the film's stars, Seth Rogen and James Franco, to give him the film.

Other independent theatres have made similar efforts to protest Sony's decision to cancel the film's release. Texas cinema The Alamo Drafthouse, for instance, planned to screen Team America: World Police, a film similarly critical of North Korea's leader, in place of The Interview, but then cancelled that screening as well.

Scollon wants to screen the film on Jan. 8. He also wants to screen the film in Montreal, should he get his hands on a copy of it.

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