James Franco fell ill amid the furore over his controversial movie The Interview due to the “pressure” placed on him following the Sony Pictures hacking scandal and the cancellation of the film’s cinema release.
The actor and his The Interview co-star Seth Rogen were thrust into the limelight last year when hackers infiltrated the studio’s database and began leaking private emails, movie scripts and stars’ personal details.
It was suggested that the cyber-criminals had links to North Korea and carried out the attack as revenge for the studio’s controversial comedy, which depicts the assassination of the country’s leader Kim Jong-un.
The Interview was later pulled from release in the U.S. after a threat was issued to any cinemas showing it, and movie bosses called off Franco and Rogen’s press tour to promote the film.
Franco has now opened up about the problems he faced during the height of the controversy, revealing the stress of the situation made him ill.
He tells Variety.com, “It was really out of my hands. It was a situation where there was nothing for me to do. As soon as they called the press off, and the movie was pulled from theaters, there was nothing to do. They weren’t looking to me to make any decisions. It was just sitting around and staying quiet. That said, there was this pressure. There was so much attention on it – attention on a level you never expected. It was a shock to my system, and I got sick. But I was never scared for my safety or anything.”