Oscar Nominee Refuses to Sue Pirates

There’s a lesson to be learned here. As in, “How to make things work for you instead of against.” But is it valid? Whatcha think?

by Andy

The crew behind the Golden Globe-winning, Oscar-nominated movie Leviathan say they won’t sue pirates who download a screener copy of their movie. Instead they’re supporting a donation drive, with all proceeds to charity. Intriguingly, however, a pirate copy might be better than the real thing.

oscartorrentsLast week a flood of DVD screener copies of Oscar-nominated movies hit torrent sites. The Hobbit, Birdman, The Imitation Game, Selma, American Sniper, Unbroken, Big Hero 6, Into the Woods, and Big Eyes all appeared online.

But the leakers still hadn’t finished. The Gambler, Inherent Vice, A Most Violent Year and Kill The Messenger appeared on public sites and those more private, followed by Cake and Wild this week.

But while those are all Western titles, it is a movie hailing from the East that offers the most interesting back-story, from both political and piracy perspectives.

Partially financed by the Russian Culture Ministry, Leviathan tells the story of a man fighting against corruption in a Russia depicted as dark and cruel. Leviathan just picked up the Golden Globe Award for Best Foreign Language Film and is also nominated for an Oscar.

Like all of its counterparts listed above, Leviathan too has leaked onto the Internet in DVD screener format. However, what is particularly interesting is how the movie’s makers are handling this development.

“All the films nominated for an Oscar have been downloaded by pirates. We are not going to pursue anybody,” Leviathan producer Alexander Rodnyansky told local media.

While that might be music to the ears of file-sharers, the response from fellow digital producer Slava Smirnov generates yet more interest in the movie. In solidarity with the filmmakers, Smirnov has just launched an independent website with the aim of taking donations from downloaders and forwarding that money to the crew of Leviathan.

“As a result of leakage of all films nominated for an Oscar in 2015, the film Leviathan was on the Internet before it hit the box office in Russia,” a note on the site reads.

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