[Update: Paramount, the studio behind "Team America: World Police," has canceled the screening at the Alamo Drafthouse and others that were planned.]
In the wake of Sony Pictures Entertainment's decision not to release their controversial comedy "The Interview," one Texas theater will still be bringing a satire of North Korea to moviegoers.
The Dallas/Fort Worth Alamo Drafthouse Cinema will be screening the 2004 comedy “Team America: World Police” on Dec. 27. The film, starring a cast of puppets, portrays former North Korean leader Kim Jong-il as a megalomaniacal villain.
The movie “The Interview,” which stars actors Seth Rogen and James Franco, drew controversy for its plot in which Rogen and Franco’s characters are given the job of assassinating North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. This past June, the North Korean government said in a statement about the movie that it is “the most blatant act of terrorism and war [that] will absolutely not be tolerated” and that “if the US administration allows and defends the showing of the film, a merciless countermeasure will be taken.”
This month, a group calling themselves the Guardians of Peace hacked the computers of various workers at Sony, revealing e-mails and data such as employees’ Social Security numbers, in addition to other information. Intelligence officials recently told the New York Times they believe the North Korean government was "centrally involved" with the hacking. After the Guardians of Peace invoked Sept. 11 in a threat to those who planned to attend “Interview,” Sony canceled the release of the film. The studio told USA Today that it is not currently planning to release the movie on any platform.
So Alamo Drafthouse is is trying to make a statement. American flags, balloons, and other paraphernalia will be given out to those who attend, according to the theater's website. James Wallace, creative manager and programmer at the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema's Dallas/Fort Worth location, told the Dallas Morning News that cap guns will also be given to attendees. According to the site, the showing is sold out.
[Editor's note: The original version of this story misstated the cost of the movie tickets.]
The screening of the movie is also a “quote-along,” so moviegoers will be encouraged to sing along to the movie’s tracks and yell out lines.
“A lot of the brilliance in TEAM AMERICA is timeless," the description of the event on the theater’s website reads. "Acting is still the greatest gift any human being can possess, and it's the only way to save America from the terrorists... And THAT is how true American heroes will be celebrating this year, but if you want to let the terrorists win...well, that's your prerogative.”
“We're just trying to make the best of an unfortunate situation," Wallace said in an interview with the Hollywood Reporter.