Obama: Sony made a mistake cancelling 'The Interview'

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Friday there was strong criticism coming from President Barack Obama for the way Sony has dealt with the hacking crisis.

On Friday, President Barack Obama said Sony Pictures made a mistake by cancelling the release of the movie "The Interview" scheduled for next week. However, the North Korean hackers who have threatened a 9/11 type of revenge called it a wise move.

The White House is convinced the attack came from North Korea. The president said we will respond proportionately in a place and time and manner we choose. Also on Friday, for the first time, Sony spoke publicly about the hacking issue.

Obama told reporters he wished Sony would have come to him before cancelling the release of the movie, "The Interview." He said in a press conference, "I would have told them, 'Do not get into a pattern in which you are intimidated by these kinds or criminal attacks.'"

"I would be fibbing to say I wasn't disappointed," Sony Pictures CEO Michael Lynton said in reaction to Obama's comments.

Lynton said it was the theaters that pulled the plug on the movie, scheduled to be released on Dec. 25.

"The movie theaters came to us, one by one, over the course of a very short period of time. We were completely surprised by it and announced that they would not carry the movie. At that point in time, we had no alternative, but to not proceed with the theatrical release on the 25th of December," Lynton said.

The movie is a comedy about two journalists who landed an interview with the North Korean dictator and are asked by the CIA to assassinate him.

Now hackers believed to be associated with the Korean government are demanding that all trailers be removed from the Internet or they will release more damaging information against Sony.

"We would still like the public to see the movie, absolutely," Lynton said.

Steve Maurer teaches information technology at UC Berkeley. He says why not do what the Wall Street Journal is proposing?

"I think it makes a lot of sense is that the American government either buy the film or get a copy of it gratis from Sony and put it on the Internet with no contract restrictions," Steve Maurer from the Goldman School of Public Policy said.

In the meantime, Sony has hired a Silicon Valley company, FireEye in Milpitas, to deal with the hacking issue.

Obama will be in Hawaii with his family for the holidays and he said he has a long list of movies he plans to watch. When asked if he could see "The Interview," he said he never releases his movie list.

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