The hacks that brought the operations of Sony Pictures Entertainment to a screeching halt in December have proven costly for the motion picture studio, to the tune of 1.8 billion yen ($15 million). But despite the cleanup costs, the company says its motion picture division still managed to post a profit for the reporting period hardest hit by the cyberattack.
Overall, Sony’s motion picture division saw sales decrease 7.7 percent to 206.6 billion yen ($1.7 billion), due to falling theatrical revenue and fewer home entertainment releases in its fiscal 2014 third quarter, which ended Dec. 31, Sony said in company filings published Tuesday. It also noted a decline in television production revenues, which saw higher sales last year due to the hit series “Breaking Bad” (produced by Sony Pictures), which has since ended its run on AMC.
Sony Pictures profits fell 18 billion yen ($148.3 million) to 6.2 billion yen ($51 million), a 74 percent drop compared with the same quarter in the previous year. Funds set aside to investigate and fix the damage related to the hacks accounted for 10 percent of the decrease.
The hacks, executed by a group called Guardians of Peace, resulted in hundreds of terabytes of data released to the public, including embarrassing internal emails and even unreleased films. Amy Pascal, former co-chairman of Sony Pictures Entertainment, stepped down following the hack.
An FBI investigation determined that the hack was orchestrated by North Korea with help from China, in response to the production of “The Interview,” a comedy film starring Seth Rogen and James Franco as two journalists sent to North Korea to assassinate that nation's leader, Kim Jong Un.