North Korea vows 'merciless' retaliation if U.S. theaters show films mocking its leader

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Image Credit: Ed Araquel

Last week, a spokesman for North Korean supreme leader Kim Jong-Un revealed that Kim would probably watch Seth Rogen and James Franco’s film The Interview, about a TV interviewer and his producer who get caught up in a plan to assassinate Kim (played in the film by Randall Park). But even before the supreme leader got a chance to see the film for himself, his government took a harder stance.

Today, a North Korean foreign ministry spokesman announced that the country would consider the release of “a movie on a plot to hurt our top-level leadership” an “act of war.” The spokesman did not mention the project by name, but was more than likely referencing The Interview, which is set to be released in October—barring a political intervention.

“If the U.S. administration allows and defends the showing of the film, a merciless counter-measure will be taken,” the spokesman was quoted by KCNA, the state news agency, as saying.

This condemnation comes amid other complaints against The Interview, which is pitched as a comedy, from the Communist country’s administration. Still, today’s statements were the most serious yet, alleging that the “reckless U.S. provocative insanity” of using a “gangster filmmaker” to challenge the state’s leadership was spurring “a gust of hatred and rage” among the North Korean civilians and army.

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