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Sony CEO Kazuo Hirai speaks on hack that destabilised studio biz

MUMBAI: Sony CEO Kazuo Hirai finally broke his silence on the hack which put the studio in a mess. He said that the hack made Sony’s past and present employees the unfortunate victims of one of the most vicious cyber-attacks the company has known.

“Both Sony Pictures Entertainment former employees and certainly current employees were unfortunately the victims of one of the most malicious cyber-attacks we have known in recent history. I am very proud of all employees and all the partners we’ve worked with as well who stood up against the extortionate effort of these criminals,” he said.

The comments were the first public remarks Hirai made since the hack occurred last month.

Delivering his keynote at the International CES 2015 confab, Hirai said, “I’m very proud of all who stood up against the criminals’ efforts and worked 24 hours a day to bring The Interview to audiences in the United States and Canada, online and in motion picture theatres.”

He added that the freedom of speech and expression are important lifelines of Sony and its entertainment business, and today, ‘The Interview’ is available through multiple online venues and through satellite, telecom and cable partners as well as 580 independent theatres alone in US.

Hirai also spoke of another Sony film, ‘Annie’. Complimenting the film on its Golden Globe nominations, he highlighted Sony’s biggest hits in TV and film over the past year, which included ‘The Amazing Spider-Man 2’, ‘22 Jump Street’, ‘The Goldbergs’ and ‘The Blacklist’.

In addition, he also highlighted recent releases from the Sony Music division, including albums from Iggy Azalea and Pink Floyd.

The chief executive also generated some buzz by speaking about ‘Powers’, the upcoming scripted drama series produced by Sony Pictures exclusively for PlayStation.

The conglomerate’s gaming console PlayStation 4 was also commended by Hirai for selling 18.5 million units since launch.

Hirai further pledged that Sony will push the pedal in 4K content creation and delivery. “4K will continue to be an important area of development and distinction for Sony,” he said, citing TV series that currently shoot or are about to begin shooting in 4K, including ‘The Blacklist’ and ‘Masters of Sex’.