The 16 Biggest Things We Learned from the Sony Leak

Last month, hackers (possibly North Korean) leaked a metric crapton of documents, emails, and other internal information from Sony Pictures. The stated intent was to punish the studio for The Interview, an upcoming movie that has Seth Rogen and James Franco attempting to assassinate the leader of North Korea. Over the subsequent weeks, dozens of unannounced projects, movie ideas, and executive-level conversations emerged, and they're not just about Spider-Man (although there's plenty of that to go around).

Here are 16 of the biggest things we learned from the leak.

1. Sony wants a Super Mario Bros. movie.

In a move that make sense to exactly no one outside of this deal, the Sony leak revealed that they're working on an animated Mario Bros. movie with producer Avi Arad, and Nintendo is totally cool with that.

"I am the proud father of mario the animated film [sic]," Avi Arad wrote to Sony studio chief Amy Pascal in an October email. He then attached photos of him with Mario creator Shigeru Miyamoto and Nintendo CEO Satoru Iwata, captioning the latter, "Happy ceo, lets get together, it's the mother load."

The fact that anyone wants to make a Mario Bros. movie after the live-action disaster in the 90s is surprising, but the fact that Sony is involved is kind of mind-boggling. After all, Sony as a company also produces the PlayStation 4 video game console, a device that competes with Nintendo's own console, the Wii U.

This does not seem to concern Sony though, and they're even mulling about the possibility of Samurai Jack's Genndy Tartakovsk directing.

2. If Spider-Man does appear in Cap 3, Sony wants him back afterwards.

Apparently, the Spider-Man in Captain America: Civil War option is still very much on the table at the moment, but if it happens, Sony still wants the ability to make more movies with the character afterwards.

An October email from Michael De Luca, co-president of production for Columbia Pictures, to Amy Pascal, co-chairman of Sony Pictures Entertainment stated that a Spider-Man that debuted in Cap 3 could go on to star in his own movie:

"I really feel, in my heart of hearts, that the new spiderman [sic] in cap 3 could just appear in his own film, be it sinister six or a kick ass spidey film of his own, after that intro in cap 3 and people would be cool with it," he wrote.

3. A Jump Street/Men in Black crossover has been greenlit.

An early front-runner for the craziest movie crossover ever, Sony is mulling over the idea of having Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill's undercover cops sharing the screen with the Men in Black. Yeah, that Men in Black.

According to emails sent from Sony exec Amy Pascal, the movie will be written by Phil Lord and Chris Miller, and has actually gotten the greenlight to proceed from the studio.

In an email chain discussing the project, Lord wrote, "jump street merging with mib i think that's clean and rad and powerful."

Strangely though, Sony isn't even considering approaching Will Smith or Tommy Lee Jones for a role, which makes very little sense in my brain. Why make a MIB crossover without the two faces that define what a MIB movie is?

4. Even Sony admits that Adam Sandler's movies suck nowadays.

Among the leaks was a text file that seemed to be collecting a lot of different Sony employee's gripes with the studio's current approach. The issue of originality and a lack of strong franchises at Sony are mentioned pretty frequently, but the one thing that everyone seems to agree on is that we're all sick of crappy Adam Sandler movies. Here are a few of the quotes.

There is a general "blah-ness" to the films we produce. Althought we manage to produce an innovative film once in awhile... we continue to be saddled with the mundane, formulaic Adam Sandler films.

We only release a dozen or so Columbia Pictures a year, for example. And will we still be paying for Adam Sandler? Why?

The studio needs to change deal structure that has been in place with Happy Madison, as this arrangement has disproportionately benefitted Adam Sandler and his team, relative to SPE.

5. A full-on Spider-Man reboot is on the table.

If the Marvel talks don't pan out, Sony seems to be exploring the option to completely reboot their Spider-Man series yet another time.

The Daily Beast discovered an 8-page document distributed internally at the studio in November 2014 stating that they could likely get way with rebooting the franchise without redoing the origin story for a third time. The document points towards James Bond as an example of a character who audiences recognize even without all the backstory.

The document further outlined a list of directors who could potentially helm the reboot, although it doesn't look like any of them have been approached about the possibility yet. They are: Brad Bird, Chris Buck & Jennifer Lee, Damien Chazelle, Joe Cornish, Glenn Ficarra & John Requa, James Gunn, Don Hall & Chris Williams, Phil Lord & Chris Miller, Joachim Rønning & Espen Sandberg, Colin Trevorrow, Edgar Wright, and David Yates.

Finally, the doc points to two specific routes this proposed reboot could take. One is an adaptation of Kraven's Last Hunt, often considered to be one of the finest Spidey storylines. Another is to follow the character as an adult, after he's already become an established superhero.

 

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