By Kevin Jagernauth | The Playlist July 25, 2014 at 1:34PM
Get ready for the debate over piracy to once again rear its head. Back in 2009, a work print (that turned out to be not all that different than the released version) of "X-Men Origins: Wolverine" leaked online almost a month ahead of its release, and whether or not it damaged the box office is still up for debate. Despite Fox claiming the pirated copy was viewed 4.5 million times (which doesn't necessarily mean those people would've bought a ticket instead), the movie still opened to a massive $85 million at the box office and did pretty well overall considering how badly it was reviewed. Did it help, hurt or make no difference? Well get ready to see how this next bit of news is spun.
A high quality version of "The Expendables 3," apparently ripped from a DVD screener, is now making the rounds of torrent sites, three weeks before the film is slated to hit theatres. And the damage from the movie being out there could be substantial. "The Expendables 2" earned over $300 million worldwide, and this sequel brings an even bigger cast, with bigger stars. Will it affect the box office? Does the average moviegoer care enough (or even know how) to torrent a movie like this?
Those questions that will surely be answered once the results come in on opening day, but be warned if you're feeling curious about downloading the rip: Nu Image sued 23,000 BitTorrent users in 2011 for downloading "The Expendables," and the authorities eventually caught up with the guy who uploaded 'Wolverine' too, so you might be better off paying for the movie at the multiplex instead of trying to save a few bucks.
"The Expendables 3" opens on August 15th. Check out the garish Comic-Con posters for the film below. [Variety]