Awards screener copies of Oscar front-runners, the Christian Bale-starrer ‘Vice’ and the period dark comedy ‘The Favourite’ have been leaked online. TorrentFreak reports that the leaks come from the usual source, a group named Hive-CM8, who came under fire for having leaked major titles over the years, such as “La La Land” and ‘Call Me by Your Name’. The first leak of the 2018 awards season was ‘Green Book’, which recently won the Golden Globe for Best Picture – Musical or Comedy and has been nominated in the Best Picture category at the British Academy of Film & Television Arts (BAFTA). The decision to wait before releasing the title, according to TorrentFreak, was because the group wanted the film to make back its budget at the box office. “Well, one year has passed and it’s that time of the year that everyone is waiting for. Screener Time. As usual we love to share with friends all over the world,” the group stated. ‘The Favourite’ received 12 nominations at the BAFTAs – the most of any film. Lead star Olivia Colman has already won Golden Globe for her performance as Queen Anne in the film. Christian Bale, meanwhile, has won the Globe for Best Actor in a Musical or Comedy for his performance as former US vice president Dick Cheney in the film. Hive-CM8 had previously apologised for leaking the screener of Quentin Tarantino’s ‘The Hateful Eight’. “We held back this title until a week after to give the movie a fighting chance to play in the budget, we learned from our mistake. We feel sorry for the trouble we caused by releasing that great movie before its release date had even begun. We never intended to hurt anyone by doing that, we didn’t know it would get that popular that quickly,” the group said in a statement. Among the group of screeners leaked that year was Bale’s previous collaboration with director Adam McKay, ‘The Big Short’. Published in Daily Times, January 13th 2019.