Seth Rogen Addresses Sony Hack, Interview Drama: The Movie “Wasn’t Meant to Be Controversial”

Seth Rogen Addresses Sony Hack
Seth Rogen spoke with Good Morning America about his thoughts on the Sony hack and its perceived connection to his movie The Interview Miquel Benitez/Getty Images

Seth Rogen wanted to make a movie, not a political statement — but somehow he did both. The Neighbors actor's latest film, The Interview, has been the subject of intense scrutiny in recent weeks, as many have speculated that the flick may be the reason for the massive cyber attack on Sony. (As noted by The New York Times and CNN, the mystery hackers did not mention The Interview by name, but did demand that Sony "stop immediately showing the movie of terrorism.") 

Rogen and costar James Franco stopped by Good Morning America this week to promote the film, which hits theaters on Dec. 25. Asked to address the insane controversy surrounding the comedy —about a fictional assassination attempt on North Korean leader Kim Jong Un — Rogen said he had no idea it would cause such a fuss.

"I can't definitively say I know the ramifications of the storm. I mean, I don't know if the hacking honestly is because of our movie, definitively or not," he told GMA's George Stephanopoulos. "I know that it has been the center of a lot of media attention lately. It is weird, because we just wanted to make a really funny, entertaining movie, and the movie itself is very silly and wasn't meant to be controversial in any way."

The Knocked Up star, who came up with the idea for the film, added that he stands behind what they created. While some reports on leaked emails from the Sony hack suggest that Rogen and the studio were at odds over certain changes that had been requested, the actor told GMA that there's always some back-and-forth during the filmmaking process.

"Ultimately, it's a creative dialogue. As the filmmakers, we're just trying to entertain the audience as much as possible. The people who pay for our movies have a billion other things that they're worried about as well," he explained. "With every movie we do, there's a conversation creatively over what happens. But ultimately, I'm 100 percent behind the finished product of the movie."

The Interview still
Ed Araquel/Columbia Pictures

Asked whether he's had any second thoughts about releasing the flick, he replied, "At this point, it's too late to have any [second thoughts], really. Again, I like the movie. I can't, in my head, over-connect everything surrounding it with the movie itself."

As for the speculation that North Korea itself is behind the Sony hack, Rogen said he doesn't know either way but wonders how the movie would be received if it were allowed to be screened there. (For the record, North Korean officials have denied that the country is responsible.) 

"In the movie, we go to great lengths to separate the regime that rules North Korea with the North Korean people themselves. And they are not bad. They are the victims of a horrible situation," Rogen said on GMA. "So part of me thinks that they themselves would really enjoy the movie. But who knows?"

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