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Film adaptation of Guy Delisle’s North Korean memoir shelved

Guy Delisle's PyongyangSome may argue that Sony’s decision to pull the release of Seth Rogen and James Franco’s The Interview over theatre cancellations and hacker threats doesn’t spell the end of Western culture, but the fallout has already killed another production with a North Korean setting.

New Regency announced it is pulling Pyongyang: A Journey in North Korea, an adaptation of Guy Delisle’s 2005 travelogue graphic novel, directed by Gore Verbinski and starring Steve Carrel. Published by Drawn & Quarterly, Pyongyang recalls the Quebec artist’s two-month stay in the North Korean capital while working for a French animation company.

Carrell shared his disappointment via Twitter, and Verbinski expressed his frustrations in an email to Variety:

Yesterday, I was told by New Regency and Fox that Fox will no longer be distributing the film. Prior to that, the film was green lit and fully funded by New Regency with Fox distributing. I have been told in no uncertain words that based on the situation at Sony, Fox has now decided to not distribute the film. Without a distributor, New Regency was forced to shut the film down.

My thoughts:

I find it ironic that fear is eliminating the possibility to tell stories that depict our ability to overcome fear.

Guy Delisle's Pyongyang

Guy Delisle’s Pyongyang