Netflix’s Bird Box featured real life footage of a Canadian tragedy that saw the deaths of many people. While Netflix initially refused to remove the scene from its film, as per a recent Entertainment Weekly report, they have finally agreed to replace the sequence, given how offensive and insensitive its inclusion in the film was.
Netflix’s Bird Box is a post-apocalyptic film about the onset of a sudden condition that causes people to commit suicide. When a character begins to see things, they get an irresistible urge to hurt and kill themselves. The ones who survive, do so by sequestering themselves indoors and refusing to look at anything outside. The story of Bird Box features a pregnant woman (Sandra Bullock) and a group of survivors who take up residence with one another and try to outlast the world around them.
Early on in the film, a news report shows a variety of incidents to establish the world devolving into anarchy. One such clip that was used as a real-life incident of the 2013 Lac-Megantic Rail Disaster. The incident saw a crude oil-carrying freighter derail, resulting in fires and explosions that killed 42 people. The streaming giant was notified in January of its use of the real-life footage, as per the Associated Press, urging them to remove it, as it was incredibly insensitive to the people affected by the disaster to feature the tragedy in a fictional movie.
— Canadian Press Arts/Life (@CdnPress_Arts) March 14, 2019
The original request came directly from the Canadian Parliament, as legislator Pierre Nantel urged Netflix to remove the scene from their original film.
“We know people are going to go and watch this film, and again these real images will be used. For people in Lac-Megantic, they saw images of their own downtown burning, and could imagine their own family members in it.”
As per Netflix’s own reports, Bird Box was one its most-watched original films in the first seven days of its release, boasting of over 45 million accounts having viewed the film.
This is not the first time that Netflix has had to edit or remove content from their library. As The Inquisitr reported, Netflix U.K. recently edited out a crucial scene in the film, The Notebook, causing massive fan outrage on social media. While it’s more than clear that the changes made to Bird Box were necessary due to causing offense to those affected by a very real world tragedy, it’s unclear as to why the changes to The Notebook were made.
As per the Entertainment Weekly report, Netflix has declined to comment on their removal of the scene from Bird Box.