On Christmas Eve, it release the drama Last Flag Flying, noting “Merry Christmas and stay tuned.”
A few hours later, the release group distributed pirated copies of I, Tonya,Lady Bird and Call Me By Your Name, together with holiday greetings — and an odd plug urging people to see these films in theaters.
“Don´t forget watching a Screener is not like the real thing, you should still all go to the cinema and support the Producers,” the release notes read. “We are especially sharing this for the people who can’t visit the cinema due to illness, or because it is a limited release that doesn’t make it to their country. So those people also can experience some award nominated movies..Enjoy.”
10 highest-grossing movies of 2017
10 highest-grossing movies of 2017
10. “Justice League” — $635.9 million
For all the bashing the movie took from critics and the fans, this latest DC Comics movie was able to crack the top 10 (let’s check in a couple of weeks to see if “The Last Jedi” ruins the party). It’s the worst performer of any of the DC releases to date, but on the bright side, it likely won’t lose $100 million for Warner Bros.
9. “It” — $697.5 million
Domestic: $327.4 million
WB couldn’t be more happy with how this adaptation of Stephen King’s book, made on a $35 million budget, performed at the box office. And it was a hit internationally, where horrors usually don’t do as strong.
8. “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales” — $794.8 million
Domestic: $172.5 million
People in the US may have had enough of the “Pirates” franchise, but it’s still working overseas. So expect more.
7. "Wonder Woman" $821.8 million
Domestic: $412.5 million
It’s Warner Bros. crowning moment so far with its DC Comics franchise. The movie wasn’t just great, it was a beacon for the female empowerment movement going on in the country.
6. “Thor: Ragnarok” — $841.8 million
Domestic: $306.3 million
Marvel did a major pivot with the “Thor” movies and it worked. The wacky feel, lead by its director Taika Waititi, gave a spike in business to one of the few Marvel characters whose standalone movies were getting stale.
5. “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2” — $863.5 million
Domestic: $389.8 million
This Marvel title, on the other hand, didn’t need any changes at all. This sequel to the overachieving original movie came back with more fun and sweet needle drops.
4. “Spider-Man: Homecoming” — $880.1 million
Domestic: $334.2 million
Sony teamed with Marvel Studios for its latest relaunch of Spidey and it was a masterful move. The inclusion of Tony Stark led to a light-hearted story and the franchise’s new Peter Parker, Tom Holland, did the rest with his charm.
3. “Despicable Me 3” — $1.03 billion
Domestic: $264.5 million
It wasn’t a great year for animated releases compared to the past couple. This is the only one that really knocked it out of the park around the world. Expect Universal and Illumination to call on Steve Carell to do more (and more Minions movies, too).
2. “The Fate of the Furious” — $1.23 billion
Domestic: $225.7 million
Not even infighting among the enormous stars of this franchise can stop its money making potential. It's pretty much bulletproof overseas, where the movie made $1 billion!
1. “Beauty and the Beast” — $1.26 billion
Domestic: $504 million
Disney’s process of doing live-action versions of its animated classics is going smoothly. 2016’s “Jungle Book” almost hit the $1 billion mark worldwide ($966.5 million) and “Beauty and the Beast” did this year. On deck: “Lion King.”
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Hive-CM8 has been the source of earlier movie leaks, including distributing a pirated copy of Quentin Tarantino’s The Hateful Eight before its theatrical premiere — an act that was blamed for hurting ticket sales and for which it apologized.
“We feel sorry for the trouble we caused by releasing that great movie before [its release date] had even begun. We never intended to hurt anyone by doing that, we didn’t know it would get that popular that quickly,” Hive explains.
The FBI traced a stolen screener to Alcon Entertainment co-CEO Andrew Kosove, who said he had never even seen a copy of the DVD and had “zero idea” how The Hateful Eight wound up in the hands of movie pirates.
Our 11 Favorite Movies of 2017
Our 11 Favorite Movies of 2017
Sweet, funny and a modern twist on the classic rom-com, "The Big Sick" is just about universally likable. While lighthearted, it carries a meaningful message that will ring true for parents and their adult children.
Emotionally prepare yourself before watching "The Florida Project," a top Oscar contender for the year. Poignant and aesthetically lovely, the sunny Orlando setting mirrors the cheerful energy of its young protagonist -- while contrasting the darkness of the adult world she lives in. Fingers crossed for an Oscar nom for little Brooklynn Prince, who at just 7 years old delivered one of the best performances of the year.
James and Dave Franco co-star in "The Disaster Artist," an unexpected film that leaves entire theater audiences in stitches. Whether or not you're familiar with cult classic "The Room," the bizarre real-life movie within this one, you'll be fascinated, bamboozled and quite entertained by James Franco's take on oddity filmmaker Tommy Wiseau.
"Spider-Man: Homecoming" may not go down as Marvel's most memorable movie -- but to be fair, there are a lot of them. It's fun and appropriately goofy while still packing a punch (literally and figuratively), and Tom Holland is (in our opinion) the best Spider-Man to date.
A tragic romance unlike any other painted on-screen, "Call Me By Your Name" explores the building sexual tension between two young men in 1981. In falling for the older, handsome Oliver, 17-year-old Elio finds himself longing to not only be with him but also be like him, attempting to transform his self-loathing into self-reflection.
As one of the biggest box-office hits of the year, Gal Gadot smashed superhero records with "Wonder Woman." It's a must-see for anyone who loves action, adventure and the kind of woman we all dream of calling a best friend or life partner.
Harrison Ford and Ryan Gosling make an unflappable duo in "Blade Runner 2049." Note: It'll make more sense -- and carry much more weight -- for anyone who's seen the original 1982 film.
It's not out yet in theaters, but movie critics are already giving the thumbs-up to "Star Wars: The Last Jedi." After teasing us with just a glimpse of Mark Hamill's Luke Skywalker at the end of "The Force Awakens," the eighth installment features Luke more heavily, much to fans' satisfaction.
Who doesn't love Reese Witherspoon? "Home Again" is one of her sweetest films to date, the perfect flick for a girls' night in (or to force your husband to watch with you). Her three young male co-stars aren't bad to look at, either.
Sequels often fall flat, but "Guardians of the Galaxy 2" managed to best its predecessor -- and not just because Baby Groot is so cute. Chris Pratt's undying charisma carries the film in one of Marvel's weirdest but most fun flicks to date.
Just about everyone who's seen "Lady Bird" wants Saoirse Ronan to snag a Best Actress nomination. It's similar to "Juno "(2007) but perhaps more true-to-life and edgy, with a compelling mother-daughter story that will leave you reflecting on your own teenage years.