Movies

Hackers hold unreleased Disney film for 'huge' ransom

Disney chief Bob Iger said on Monday that hackers claiming to have access to one of its unreleased movies were demanding a "huge" ransom. He did not reveal which film had been stolen, but said the company would not be giving in, said The Hollywood Reporter (THR).

It reported that Disney is working with federal agents and monitoring for leaks online. Movie website Deadline identified Pirates Of The Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, which opens on May 26 in the US, as the target, while some speculated on Twitter that Pixar's Cars 3 might have been hit. Although both films are expected to do well, their profits are likely to be dwarfed by another Disney film - Star Wars: The Last Jedi, which hits theatres on Dec 15.

"In my opinion, if it were Last Jedi, he would pay in a heartbeat. But Pirates... meh," tweeted Mr Ryan Parker, a staff writer on THR.

The thieves demanded to be paid in Bitcoin and are threatening to release segments of the movie.

Paul Tassi, who writes about technology for Forbes, said Pirates would be unlikely to suffer were it the target, as its release is so near.

"...The kinds of people willing to pay money to see Johnny Depp stumble his way through a fifth Pirates movie in theatres are probably not the type to download a stolen copy of it before it comes out."

He also said the movie would appear on torrent websites anyway, so the hackers "seem to be really over-estimating their impact".- AFP

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