SEATTLE (AP) — A few small movie theaters in Washington State will be among those showing “The Interview” as part of Sony’s limited Christmas Day release of the film.
David McRae, owner of independent Ark Lodge Cinemas in Seattle’s Columbia City neighborhood, said Tuesday he had received permission from Sony Entertainment to show the Seth Rogen and James Franco comedy about a plot to assassinate North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.
“Before the notoriety, I was never interested in playing it,” said McRae, who hasn’t seen the film. “It just looked like another R-rated ‘bromance’ comedy. But I do like satire.”
He added: “Artists have a right to have their work shown. Even Seth Rogen and James Franco deserve that.”
The Blue Fox Drive-In in Oak Harbor, on Whidbey Island, said on its website it planned to show “The Interview” this Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights. The Grand Cinema in Tacoma announced on its Facebook page that it would show the film once a day, at 9:20 p.m., for a week, beginning Thursday.
The film prompted an international incident after U.S. officials said North Korea had hacked Sony’s computers and leaked executives’ emails in retaliation.Sony initially canceled plans for the release, following threats of attacks on theaters that played it, but changed course Tuesday and said a limited number of theaters would show it.
The Ark Lodge has three screens and is located in a refurbished Masonic temple that dates to the 1920s. It was first converted into a theater in 2002, and McRae, 54, bought it and reopened it in 2012.
McRae said the first showing will be Thursday at 9:30 p.m., followed by two daily showings — at 2:30 and 9:30 p.m. — through New Year’s Day. That’s all he has time for: He’s also showing “The Hobbit” and Disney’s “Into The Woods.”
McRae, who joined other independent theaters in petitioning Sony to show the film, said he doesn’t expect security problems but planned to consult with a security firm and possibly Seattle police to be sure.
“We want to ensure the safety of the public more than anything,” he said. “We’re a small neighborhood theater. We’ve got one computer. If we get hacked, we can change it.”
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