Minna Marks' email was hacked.
posted on June 07, 2016, at 10:00 a.m.
What an adventure the internet has been on today. Minna Marks’ email was hacked and posted on 4chan earlier this morning and it wouldn’t be far from the mark to say all hell broke loose. Why?
Well… While Minna is a rising starlet, it’s more about the content of whom is in her emails. With some the heaviest hitting names in Hollywood in her email, she’s accidentally brought the spotlight unpleasantly onto friends and colleagues.
But, before we dive into the content; how is it we are here? How did her email get hacked in the first place?
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The trade of celebrity information has become a lucrative market on the deep web. Not long after the sentencing of Ryan Collins, 36, Pennsylvania for his part in “The Fappening”, there were rumours on 4chan about a collection of celebrity emails up for sale.
This list made its way to Tumblr where the trade of “rares” (particularly of private photographs of celebrities) thrives. It was there that a fan of Marks purchased access to her account for $50. A relatively modest sum for access to her password and private information.
Fast forward to yesterday, 6 June.
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At around 12pm tumblr user “minnamarksexposed” began releasing screenshots of her emails. By 2pm, the emails were circulating the internet and picked up by Buzzfeed. This was quickly followed by other major media outlets, forums, other blogging platforms and national news.
Meanwhile, Marks, who is in Seoul for production of her latest film, issued no statement from her or her people in the intervening hours as the screenshots circulated the internet. It wasn’t until news broke that her people were in contact with the FBI and Google that we had some damning evidence this was not a hoax.
At this point, Marks’ emails were being discussed openly in comment threads and on national news. It was less about Marks in many parts and more focused on who else was included. However, the public perception of Marks has been irrevocably shattered.
Prior to this, Marks had no rumours of drug abuse or sexual scandal, but between confirmation of cocaine abuse, nude photographs sent to a variety of people and insults levelled at colleagues (both in production and other actresses, particularly toward the most powerful man in Hollywood, Harvey Weinstein) - it’s clear: things are going to be difficult for Marks in the coming weeks.
The original tumblr user had this to say on their blog before it was taken down by tumblr:
“I looked up to Minna as a role model for LGBT. I am choosing to share these emails in order to show she is just like the rest of Hollywood and purposefully used a LGBT identity to try and gain goodwill for her films while not identifying as LGBT given she is [sleeping with] men. She's also shown her true colors of biting the hand that feeds her with negative comments about directors and producers.”
This has divided public opinion on Tumblr with arguments of biphobia. “The emails leaked so far have only been over the last few weeks…” writes user, mermaid-lesbian. “I think you’re being incredibly unfair to Minna with this assessment of her sexuality; how can we tell from a few weeks of emails whether she is hetero-, homo- or bisexual? It’s more concerning to me her character in speaking negatively of people she works with.”
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So. What is going to happen to Marks?
Well, for starters - South Korean authorities have already confirmed they will be investigating her for not just drug use, but drug trafficking. What does this mean? Probably nothing. Marks will have destroyed any drugs she may have had in the wake of this, but South Korea has a strict no-tolerance policy and must be seen as being heavy-handed on the foreign actress.
Reports from South Korea confirm she did not attend set today; however, director Bong Joon-ho has already come out to defend the actress in South Korean press. He has praised her work ethic, talent and right to privacy. Co-writer Jon Ronson has also dismissed claims he would allow Marks to go.
It’s not looking so rosy over at Fox Searchlight, however, where Marks was recently announced in the role of playing wife to DÅomhnall Gleeson’s A.A. Milne. They have yet to make a statement, but reputable sources have stated she has been requested to fly to London for crisis talks.
Disney is also reportedly furious with the actress and, in particular, the implication she has put on their new Han Solo, Andrew Bates. Tumblr fans of Bates are torn between vilifying Marks and blaming Cate Lyon with accusations the actress is behind the leak despite Cate being in Marks’ emails herself.
Fellow stars have come out to defend her, with past directors, Guillermo Del Toro and Stuart Murdoch taking to twitter to defend their leading lady (Crimson Peak and God Help the Girl) in the same manner as Bong Joon-ho. Her character has been defended by friends across social media and people have sprung to her defence citing her right to privacy.
MARGARET DOHERTY / Getty Images
Will it harm her career?
Hard to say.
With regards to the drugs, Kate Moss bounced back. Cara Delevingne did as well. Marks saying she was doing cocaine doesn’t necessarily mean that she has or was (though we are 99% she was).
Likewise, Marks’ comments were not that AWFUL in the grand scheme of it. She called Weinstein a “creep” (which isn’t far off the mark) and insulted “princess sparkletits” (a leading actress her age) with Kaitlin Mercier. But she also did have positive things to say about people and her friendships come off as any typical 20 year old.
Outside of the drugs, there isn’t much that separates Marks’ from any woman in her late 20s. It’ll be interesting the coming days how the media responds to her sexuality, particularly, given until this point she had never confirmed it. Her owning of her sexuality is empowering and some feminist bloggers have leapt to her defence at having multiple partners and engaging in sex with a healthy attitude.
Role model? Not quite.
UPDATE: Marks’ representatives have released the following statement:
“We are devastated to confirm there are individuals in this world who seek to gain from the invasion of privacy of others. This morning Minna Marks’ personal email including photographs contained within were released on the internet. We intend on working closely with the authorities to stop the unlawful trade of this information and to assist, where possible, with ensuring this violation does not happen to others. Minna has never openly discussed her personal life nor does she intend to begin today as a result of this; however, with Minna we would like to address anyone who is unsure of their sexuality should not feel bullied to define or identify in order to fit in. Minna is proudly bisexual and it has never been a secret with her family, friends or colleagues. She would like to urge anyone struggling to come to terms with their own sexual identity that with time, patience and kindness, it gets better.”