In the midst of a crippling cyberattack, Sony allowed at least two dozen people on the studio lot on Thursday night without asking them for identification, including this reporter.
Members of the media and Hollywood guilds were invited to see Russia’s critically acclaimed foreign language contender “Leviathan,” which Sony Pictures Classics opens in Los Angeles on Dec. 31. I brought my friend, independent filmmaker Matt Silverman, and arranged drive-ons for each of us, though we wound up riding together. The screening was to be held at 7:30 p.m. in Room 23 of the Jimmy Stewart building.
At 7:15 p.m. we approached security at the Overland Ave. gate and took out our wallets as we prepared to show our IDs, which is standard procedure for all visitors and employees entering a studio lot.
We told the security guard we were there for the “Leviathan” screening and he waved us onto the Sony lot, instructing us to park in a nearby garage and check in with the guard on the first floor. We presumed we would be asked for ID soon, right?
We parked and took the elevator down to the first floor, once again removing our wallets as we prepared to check in. For the second straight time, a Sony security guard waved us through the turnstile without checking our IDs or even asking for our names.
Silverman and I were both incredulous. How could two people get on a studio lot without showing ID, let alone the Sony lot at a time like this, when security should be increased?
As we walked around a construction area toward the Jimmy Stewart building, we passed a group of children who had just exited a Sony screening of “Annie” with their parents.
When we arrived at the screening room, I polled most of the theater and not a single person told me they showed ID before entering the lot. As the realization dawned on them, audience members began talking about how odd this seemed, given the circumstances.
“It’s weird on a normal day to not get ID’d, and it’s not a normal day,” said Silverman.
Sony security was made aware of the problem on Thursday night but did not reach out to this reporter to investigate the situation, and Sony did not immediately respond to a request for comment.