×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Oliver Stone Calls Pokemon Go a ‘New Level of Invasion’ at Comic-Con ‘Snowden’ Panel

Oliver Stone does not find the Pokemon Go phenomenon to be light-hearted fun, to say the least.

During a panel for his new movie “Snowden” in the first day of San Diego Comic-Con 2016, the director was asked about the app, and called it “a new level of invasion,” and said it could lead to totalitarianism.

“They are data mining every person in this room,” he said. “It’s what they call surveillance capitalism.”

He also commented that the app could help usher in “a robot society.”Stone is not the first to raise concerns about Pokemon Go and data collection. After the now wildly popular app gained traction, many pointed out that Pokemon Go requires access to a user’s entire Google account on iOS, including location data, email and browsing history.

Niantic, the developer behind Pokemon Go, said it “fixed the Google account scope” in a statement attached to the first patch to the game last week.

“We recently discovered that the Pokémon GO account creation process on iOS erroneously requests full access permission for the user’s Google account,” Niantic said in a statement. “However, Pokémon GO only accesses basic Google profile information (specifically, your User ID and email address) and no other Google account information is or has been accessed or collected.”

Cast members at the panel included Joseph Gordon-Levitt, who plays NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, showing his patriotism in an American flag t-shirt, Shailene Woodley and Zachary Quinto as Glenn Greenwald.

The movie focuses on “The ultimate conspiracy story,” said Stone.

Quinto added his own thoughts on Pokemon Go, saying to much applause, “People need to pursue what makes them happy, what makes me happy is looking up at people and putting down my screen for at least some part of the day.”

Stone said that in France, which provided financing for the film, “They have a respect for privacy there.” He said studios didn’t want to pick up his film, charging that “self censorship and corporate studio boards blocked funding abilities.” When asked whether the NSA could have disrupted funding of the film, Stone said, “I don’t acknowledge or feel suspicion that they did…I feel the 1984 Big Brother vibe in general in this society…I don’t know and neither do you.”

“The word patriot gets brought up a lot,” says Gordon Levitt, “and I’m sitting next to the most patriotic people in American Cinema.” Gordon Levitt donated a portion of his acting fee to the American Civil Liberties Union.

For Stone, Quinto, Gordon Levitt and Woodley, the film is a call to action. Quinto said, “The people in this room and the people at this convention are the absolute core of the message of this film. This is your world. Get involved and be aware of what’s happening.”

“Snowden” opens September 16.

Popular on Variety

More Digital

  • Doug Scott - Twitch

    Twitch Recruits Zynga's Doug Scott as Chief Marketing Officer

    Doug Scott is leaving as game company Zynga’s marketing boss to become Twitch’s CMO. Scott assumes the CMO role at Twitch after previous chief marketing officer Kate Jhaveri exited this summer to become the NBA’s top marketing exec. News of Scott’s hire comes less than a month after Twitch launched a redesigned logo and site, [...]

  • Carter Hansen - VidCon

    VidCon Hires Ex-AwesomenessTV Exec Carter Hansen to Head Conference Programming

    VidCon hired Carter Hansen, a founding executive at AwesomenessTV, as VP of programming to oversee conference programming and content for the internet-video events producer. In the newly created role, Hansen reports to VidCon GM Jim Louderback and will be based in Viacom’s Hollywood office. As part of overseeing programming worldwide for VidCon’s community, creator and [...]

  • The Boys Amazon Prime

    Nielsen Adds Amazon Prime Video to SVOD Measurement, With Limitations

    After two years of measuring Netflix viewing, Nielsen has now added Amazon Prime Video to the mix of subscription-streaming services it tracks — and with the same set of limitations. Nielsen’s SVOD Content Ratings originally launched in October 2017 with Netflix. According to the research firm, the addition of Amazon Prime Video measurement will let [...]

  • Gavel Court Placeholder

    Netflix Movie Scammer Admits to Defrauding Investors Out of $14 Million

    A California man has admitted to defrauding investment groups — nabbing $14 million — by falsely claiming the money would be used to produce a feature film for Netflix. On Oct. 18, Adam Joiner, 41, of Manhattan Beach, Calif., pleaded guilty to one count of wire fraud in U.S. District Court, according to federal authorities. [...]

  • netflix debt

    Netflix to Raise Another $2 Billion Through Debt to Fund Massive Content Spending

    Netflix, burning boatloads of cash with a projected $15 billion content budget for 2019, is adding to its debt load once again. On Monday (Oct. 21), Netflix announced plans to offer approximately $2.0 billion aggregate principal amount of junk bonds, in both U.S dollar and euro denominations. As of Sept. 30, Netflix reported $12.43 billion [...]

  • Bristol, CT - July 26, 2018

    Mina Kimes Helps ESPN Kick Off 'Daily' Podcast

    Mina Kimes is preparing to take ESPN into a new frontier. The sports-media giant has launched a “SportsCenter” for Snapchat and tested baseball telecasts for kids. Now it’s hoping to set up shop in another media venue. Starting tomorrow, the Disney-backed company launches “ESPN Daily,” a weekday morning podcast that aims to tap its vast [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content