With less than a month until its August 15th theatrical release, a high quality version of Lionsgate’s The Expendables 3 has leaked online.
Variety reports that that illegally pirated copies of The Expendables 3 began spreading on torrent-sharing sites Wednesday. Downloads began to spike Thursday. As of 6 p.m. Eastern time Thursday, the movie had been downloaded 189,052 times worldwide, with 42,216 of those downloads coming from the U.S.
However, this isn’t the first time the film franchise has had to deal with illegal leaks of films in the franchise. In 2011, Nu Image, producer of the Expendables films, filed a copyright-infringement lawsuit targeting more than 23,000 individual BitTorrent users who had illegally downloaded copies of the first film in the series.
Other films who have unfortunately been subject to premature releases via piracy including 20th Century Fox’s X-Men Origins: Wolverine, which in 2009 made its way online a month before its theatrical release via illegal downloads from Megaupload.com. Fox claimed that there were about 15 million downloads of the film before it came out. Bronx resident Gilberto Sanchez was eventually convicted in connection with the piracy of the film in 2009 and served one year in prison. Megaupload.com was shut down in 2012.
The first two Expendables movies, starring Sylvester Stallone in the lead, were released in mid-August 2010 and August 2012, respectively, by Lionsgate. The Expendables, which was filmed with a budget of $80 million, grossed over $274 million worldwide. The 2012 sequel was made on a budget of about $100 million and took in over $300 million.
Along with Stallone, the Expendables 3 cast includes Jason Statham, Antonio Banderas, Jet Li, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Dolph Lundgren, Kelsey Grammar, Terry Crews, Mel Gibson, Wesley Snipes and Harrison Ford. It’s officially set to hit theaters August 15.