Netflix has apologized and removed the Lac-Megantic rail disaster from Bird Box. The movie contained stock footage of the real-life 2013 train crash where 47 people in Quebec, Canada were killed. When called out for using the footage back in January, the streaming platform declared that they were not going to take the footage in question out of the movie and that they were unable to remove footage once a movie was launched on their server. However, another Netflix project, Travelers, featured the same footage and took it out immediately, which raised some extra questions.
Nearly three months later, Netflix has decided to pull the controversial footage from Bird Box. The stock footage originated from Pond5, who provides footage for all types of projects. They too have stopped providing the disaster. It is unclear why they chose to pull the scene now, but it should come as a relief to the Lac-Megantic community who were not very happy about the situation. You can read a statement from the streaming platform below.
“Netflix and the filmmakers of Bird Box have decided to replace the clip. We’re sorry for any pain caused to the Lac-Megantic community.”
Canadian legislator Pierre Nantel called on Netflix to remove the Bird Box footage earlier this year. Nantel urged them to remove it in an effort to keep the Lac-Megantic community from having to suffer through the horror all over again. Lac-Megantic mayor Julie Morin also slammed Netflix and the producers of Birdbox for using the rail disaster footage. Morin stated that she would not give up on this issue and that she and her community would fight for what is right.
Netflix did not make any further comment on the matter and only stated that they removed the footage. Quebec’s minister of culture and communications Nathalie Roy was very happy that Netflix decided to take out the offending footage from Bird Box. She is happy that the community was able to unite and get something done. Roy had this to say.
“The move was expected by respect for the victims of this horrible tragedy, their families and the entire community of Lac-Megantic. This result shows that by being united and pooling our efforts, everything is possible.”
Bird Box is officially Netflix’s most-streamed piece of original content and it was massive upon its debut late last year. The movie, which stars Sandra Bullock, was an instant part of popular culture as people started to blindfold themselves and attempt every day routines in the dark, which often resulted in some humorous video on social media of people running into walls and poles. One Utah teenager even did it while driving and smashed into a pole and another car. Things were so out of hand that Netflix had to release a public statement to warn people of the dangers of running around with a blindfold on. The Netflix Bird Box news was first reported by Yahoo.