Sony CEO Kazuo Hirai has addressed the recent hack at the studio for the first time, thanking employees for their support through the difficult period and underlining the importance of freedom of expression.

The InterviewSeth Rogen [L] and James Franco [R] starred in The Interview, which Kazuo Hirai spoke about in Vegas

Addressing attendees at the International CES 2015 confab, Hirai told the Vegas crowd: "Both Sony Pictures Entertainment former employees and certainly current employees were unfortunately the victims of one of the most malicious cyber-attacks we have known in recent history."

"I am very proud of all employees and all the partners we've worked with as well who stood up against the extortionate effort of these criminals," he added.

"I have to say freedom of speech, freedom of expression - those are important lifelines of Sony and our entertainment business, and today as you all know, 'The Interview' is available through multiple online venues and through satellite, telecom and cable partners as well as 580 independent theaters alone in the U.S."

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In a little damage limitation exercise, Hirai plugged another leaked Sony movie - Annie - noting its Golden Globe nominations. He also touted the critically derided The Amazing Spider-Man, as well as TV hits The Blacklist and The Goldbergs.

He also talked up some future projects, including Powers, the upcoming scripted drama produced exclusively for Playstation.

"We very much look forward to making it a huge hit and another cross-Sony success," he said.

Based on the comic book series of the same name, the show will follow homicide detectives Christian Walker (Sharlto Copley) and Deena Pilgrim (Susan Heyward) who investigate cases involving superheroes and supervillains as part of the homicide division called Powers.  

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