Netflix's Bird Box film contains footage of Lac-Megantic disaster
18 January, 2019, 13:42 | Author: Ethel Goodwin
The railway accident hit the Quebec town of Lac-Mégantic on July 6, 2013.
Even though Netflix wasn't depicting the train tragedy in Bird Box, Julie Morin, Lac-Mégantic's mayor, and members of the online community, have asked Netflix to delete the footage from the film. The 74-car train derailed into the town itself, caught fire, and exploded.
Bird Box is provoking some controversy again.
Among other interesting viewership data Netflix has released today, it says that Bird Box has now been seen by an estimated 80 million households - which is kind of a fuzzy metric, as it refers to a single household that's seen at least 70 percent of the movie and doesn't take into account the number of actual viewers.
At least two dramas now on Netflix's Canadian platform, including "Bird Box", briefly use actual footage of the 2013 derailment.
If there is anyone who thinks that it is ok because a stock footage company has the rights to it, imagine a fictional show or movie needing video of a random building being demolished and deciding that the World Trade Center on 9/11 is flawless.
Netflix licensed the footage of the disaster from the stock image vendor Pond 5 and used it in "Bird Box" in an early TV news montage to set up its horrific premise. "We're going to make the efforts to do what we can on our end, to ensure (the footage) is being used as appropriately as possible".
Netflix declined to provide official comment to Newsweek on this matter. It also apologised, saying it did not mean to dishonour the tragic event in the town, and would be replacing the footage used in the show.
Pond 5 said it deeply regrets that images of the disaster were "taken out of context and used in entertainment programming". The show Travelers, starring Will & Grace's Eric McCormack, used some of the footage in the latest season to show disruption in London after a nuclear bomb.
The "Bird Box Challenge" trend has gotten people injured trying to do real-world activities while blindfolded, and now it appears the film itself is getting scrutinized in a bad way. "We compete with (and lose to) Fortnite more than HBO", the earnings report said, referring to the popular video game and the premium cable network now owned by AT&T Inc T.N .
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