During a company town hall meeting on Monday, Disney CEO Bob Iger revealed to his employees that a group of hackers claim to have stolen a copy of an unreleased Disney film and they are threatening to release it unless a ransom is paid.
Iger did not make mention of the film title in question however, according to Deadline, the film is the upcoming Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales which will be released in theaters on May 26th.
Iger did say, however, that the hackers are asking for a large bitcoin payment in exchange for keeping the film under wraps. The hackers have reportedly threatened to release the film in segments, bit by bit, each day the ransom remains unpaid. Iger declared on Monday that Disney would not pay any amount to the group and that they are working with the FBI on the matter.
In addition to the Pirates film, Disney also has Cars 3 on the docket for release on June 16th. Last week, rumors circulated online that a print of Star Wars: The Last Jedi was also being held for ransom but, that was later proved to be a hoax.
If you think this all sounds eerily familiar, that’s because this same situation literally just happened. This situation comes just weeks after a group of hackers threatened to release Netflix’s Orange is the New Black season 5 if a ransom was not paid. Netflix, like Disney, refused to pay or negotiate which yielded 10 episodes of the unreleased season to be published on Pirate Bay.
At this point, it is unclear if the two situations are related or if the same group is doing this to multiple studios. According to Variety, the same hacker group that got its hands on Orange is the New Black also claimed to have obtained pirated version of at least three dozen additional TV shows.
A karaoke obsessed, craft beer enthusiast and lover of all things pop culture, Denise enjoys all facets of entertainment from Broadway to box office blockbusters. In her spare time, she enjoys photography, concerts (lots and lots of concerts), volunteering, reading and playing with her rescue kitten, Samantha (who rescued who, right?).