'Expendables 3' leaked online 3 weeks prior to release

By Elizabeth Sudlow,

Lionsgate may be in a lot of trouble in the upcoming weeks as their latest film, The Expendables 3, has leaked online three weeks prior to its release.

The major action film, starring actors such as Sylvester Stallone and Harrison Ford, was leaked onto various BitTorrent download sites on Wednesday and in just 48 hours has been downloaded more than 200,000 times, reports Variety.

This situation is a large issue for the film, as the target audience is young males, who also happen to most-frequently use BitTorrent. With three weeks to go before the film hits theaters, the film could be downloaded millions of times before then.

This is not the first time something like this has happened, as X-Men Origins: Wolverine was leaked onto Megaupload back in 2008. Twentieth Century Fox estimated that tens of millions of dollars were lost from the 15 million people who downloaded the film.

Yet, the real question is who uploaded the film, as the copy is not a standard bootleg, but was taken from a DVD screener, reports Entertainment Weekly. This format usually comes from the distributor and given over to the media prior to its release.

It just may be impossible to track down who is behind the operation as TorrentFreak, a site dedicated to file sharing, claims it has worked its way back to a group known as Drarbg.

There is no way to tell if Lionsgate will lose a lot of potential revenue through online downloads, as the first movie earned nearly $275 million worldwide and the sequel went even higher with over $300 million.

Image courtesy of Dara Kushner/INFphoto.com



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