20th Century Fox's claws are bared.
The studio has vowed to prosecute whomever is responsible for a full-length copy of X-Men Origins: Wolverine ending up online Tuesday, a month ahead of its May 1 release date.
"We forensically mark our content so we can identify sources that make it available or download it," Fox said today in a statement. "The source of the initial leak and any subsequent postings will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law—the courts have handed down significant criminal sentences for such acts."
The FBI and Motion Picture Association of America are investigating, they said.
Calling the leaked cut an "incomplete and early version" of the Hugh Jackman-starring action film, the studio said it only contained temporary sound and music and was missing various scenes and special effects.
So don't go thinking the actual Wolverine is going to suck or anything.
"We are encouraged," Fox continued, "by the support of fansites condemning piracy and this illegal posting and pointing out that such theft undermines the enormous efforts of the filmmakers and actors and, above all, hurts fans of the film."
But, according to one studio exec, they aren't too concerned that a premature Internet audience is going to steal the X-Men prequel's theatrical thunder.
"People who are going to download and watch it on their computer were either never going to pay to see it anyway or they're the type of super-fan who was going to go 10 times in the first week," a Fox honcho tells EW.com.
"Seeing a spectacle movie like this one on your computer is not the same as seeing with a communal audience, and I don't think this is going to hurt them that much."