Canada Condemns Netflix Over Use of Rail Disaster Footage in 'Bird Box'
Netflix's Bird Box captivated audiences with its exploration of a post-apocalyptic world, which used footage of real-life disasters to demonstrate the widespread devastation of the story's setting. Canada's Parliament, however, is chastising the streaming service for its incorporation of a train disaster in the city of Lac-Megantic, Quebec and its refusal to remove the footage or compensate the families of the tragedy's victims.
"We know people are going to go and watch this film, and again these real images will be used," legislator Pierre Nantel argued, per the Associated Press. "For people in Lac-Megantic, they saw images of their own downtown burning, and could imagine their own family members in it."
Parliament passed a motion earlier this week claiming that Netflix should compensate residents of Lac-Megantic, the site where a train carrying crude oil derailed in a fiery explosion, killing 47 people in 2013. In Netflix's apology, a statement claimed the streaming service "understands that many feel frustration and sadness at seeing images of this tragic event," though it also claimed it couldn't make changes to "finished content."
Despite the frustrations of the Canadian government, Netflix legally purchased the stock footage of the tragedy, which means the controversy is more of a public relations hiccup as opposed to an unlawful move.
In the film, "When a mysterious force decimates the world's population, only one thing is certain: if you see it, you take your life. Facing the unknown, Malorie finds love, hope and a new beginning only for it to unravel. Now she must flee with her two children down a treacherous river to the one place left that may offer sanctuary. But to survive, they'll have to undertake the perilous two-day journey blindfolded. Academy Award winner Sandra Bullock leads an all-star cast that includes Trevante Rhodes, with Sarah Paulson, and John Malkovich in Bird Box, a compelling new thriller from Academy Award winner Susanne Bier."
Bird Box is streaming now on Netflix.
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