Apple’s iTunes has finally got its hands on The Interview, offering those in North America another option for viewing the controversial Sony Pictures movie.
It’s not altogether clear why it took so long for the film to make it to the on-demand section of the Cupertino, Calif.-based company’s online store — it landed on Google Play, YouTube, Microsoft’s Xbox Video, and a Sony site on December 24.
With all the hullabaloo surrounding the movie after a cyber attack toward the end of last month wreaked havoc at Sony Pictures, it’s possible Apple was hanging back to see if hackers went for Google and Microsoft, too.
The New York Times reported last week that Sony had approached Apple about the possibility of offering The Interview via iTunes, though at that time the tech company was apparently “not interested.”
Evidently, Apple has since changed its mind. The company’s statement on its decision to include the movie among its selection of titles was short and sweet: “We’re pleased to offer The Interview for rental or purchase on the iTunes store,” a company spokesman said.
In line with the other sites and services, iTunes is offering The Interview as a $6 rental and $15 purchase.
After backtracking on a decision to cancel the movie’s release following threats from hackers, Sony Pictures launched The Interview at select theaters across the U.S. on Christmas day, at the same time making it available online in the U.S. and Canada.
Those outside North America keen to see the movie are turning to torrent sites, with 1.5 million downloads reported in just a couple of days.
Sony said on Sunday the film, which cost $45 million to make, has so far generated $15 million in revenue via online channels, and $3 million at theaters.
[The Interview on iTunes]