Romney: Release 'The Interview' for free online

 

Mitt Romney, the Republican's 2012 presidential nominee, wants Sony Pictures to release its controversial comedy, "The Interview," for free online.

The movie studio decided Wednesday to pull the film, which depicts the assassination of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, in response to violent threats from hackers.

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Hours later, the former Massachusetts governor tweeted at Sony.

".@SonyPictures don’t cave, fight: release @TheInterview free online globally. Ask viewers for voluntary $5 contribution to fight #Ebola."

It’s the start of what’s sure to be a range of reactions from lawmakers and U.S. officials to what is a largely unprecedented event.

Rep. Steve Israel (D-N.Y.) called for Sony to release the film straight to DVD.

He tweeted: “Dear @SonyPictures - please make #TheInterviewMovie available in DVD so I can decide whether to see it, not N. Korea.”

Newt Gingrich, former Speaker and GOP presidential candidate, tweeted that the decision doesn't bode well for America.

"No one should kid themselves. With the Sony collapse America has lost its first cyberwar. This is a very very dangerous precedent." 

President Obama simply advised Americans, “Go to the movies,” during a Wednesday interview with ABC News.

Sony decided to withdraw the film shortly after major theaters backed out of showing the film Wednesday afternoon.

Theater chains were spooked by a Tuesday message from the hackers threatening Sept. 11-style attacks on any theater screening “The Interview.”

U.S. officials are reportedly close to attributing the attack to North Korea. Pyongyang has denied involvement, but over the summer called the film “an act of war.”

Sony has been battling cyberattackers since late November. The hackers have taken — and are slowly leaking — troves of Sony's internal documents and emails.