Netflix is apologizing for using sensitive footage of a Canadian train crash in its popular new release “Bird Box.”
The film, which came out in December 2018 and took social media by storm, shows a series of cataclysmic events to showcase an apocalypse. Some of the most recognizable footage comes from the 2013 Lac-Mégantic tragedy in Quebec, which killed 47 people after a train carrying oil crashed and exploded. (RELATED: Watch This Blind College Football Player Pull Off The Perfect ‘Bird Box’ Challenge)
Here are some images from the actual crash:
This day in 2013 – A 73-car oil train derails in the town of Lac-Mégantic, Quebec and explodes into flames, killing at least 47 people and destroying more than 30 buildings in the town’s central area. pic.twitter.com/4TyoWcQPNn
— Brett Rosner (@Brosner85) July 6, 2018
— CFJC Today Kamloops (@CFJC_Today) January 19, 2019
— CTV News (@CTVNews) January 18, 2019
— National Post (@nationalpost) January 16, 2019
And here are some images from “Bird Box:”
— Siglov Freudivan (@DerangedRadio) January 17, 2019
Once people began to realize Netflix was using footage of the crash, demands for protest and apologies came rolling in. Even the mayor of Lac-Mégantic, Julie Morin, called for Netflix to remedy its insensitivity.
“I don’t know if this is happening all the time, but we are looking for assurances from Netflix that … they are going to remove them,” Morin told Canadian publication The Globe And Mail. “You can be sure we are going to follow up on this, and our citizens are on our side.”
Netflix has since apologized to the people of Quebec and its Culture Minister Nathalie Roy for its perceived insensitivity, but the company is keeping the footage in its film.
“Netflix was not aware of the source of the footage and understands that many feel frustration and sadness at seeing the images of this tragic event,” the company said in a statement, adding, “The use of stock footage is a widespread practice in the film and television industry … We have begun discussions internally about best practices to avoid future uses of this and similar footage.”
Earlier this month, Netflix issued a safety statement to its viewers about not participating in the “Bird Box Challenge,” where people carry out routine tasks (such as driving) while blindfolded.
Can’t believe I have to say this, but: PLEASE DO NOT HURT YOURSELVES WITH THIS BIRD BOX CHALLENGE. We don’t know how this started, and we appreciate the love, but Boy and Girl have just one wish for 2019 and it is that you not end up in the hospital due to memes.
— Netflix US (@netflix) January 2, 2019