'The Interview’ Begins Streaming Online on Christmas Eve

by Jackie Willis 9:30 AM PST, December 24, 2014
Photo: Getty Images

Sony Pictures is bringing The Interview to the people!

After authorizing select theaters to screen the comedy, the studio announced they will also release the film online through YouTube Movies, Google Play, Xbox and the Kernel-powered site The controversial film is now available to rent for $5.99 or purchased in HD for $14.99.

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"It has always been Sony's intention to have a national platform on which to release this film," Sony's CEO Michael Lynton said in a statement to ET. "With that in mind, we reached out to Google, Microsoft and other partners last Wednesday, Dec. 17, when it became clear our initial release plans were not possible. We are pleased we can now join with our partners to offer the film nation-wide today."

As for the studio's decision to pursue a wide digital release, Lynton says, "We chose the path of digital distribution first so as to reach as many people as possible on opening day, and we continue to seek other partners and platforms to further expand the release...This release represents our commitment to our filmmakers and free speech. While we couldn't have predicted the road this movie traveled to get to this moment, I'm proud our fight was not for nothing and that cyber criminals were not able to silence us."

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Sony announced last week that The Interview -- which depicts James Franco and Seth Rogen attempting to assassinate North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un -- would not be released after a hack leaked embarrassing executive emails, full-length movies and threatened Americans in theaters with 9/11-like attacks if they went to see it. U.S. officials confirmed that North Korea was behind the cyber attack.

Now, it appears Sony is back to business as usual. The promo for The Interview was pulled off the company's YouTube page, but has since been put back up. Social media accounts for the movies are also up and running.

"Freedom of speech has prevailed!" the film's Twitter account posted. "See #TheInterview at select theaters near you this Xmas."

Will you be seeing The Interview on the big screen, or are you more likely to stream the comedy on YouTube?