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Canada's parliament is outraged over Netflix using footage of a real-life tragedy in one of its biggest hits

By Ale Russian
January 31, 2019 02:33 PM
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Credit: Netflix

Canada is coming after Netflix for using footage of one of the country’s worst train disasters in the streaming giant’s hit movie Bird Box.

The Sandra Bullock-starrer used real-life footage of the 2013 Lac-Mégantic, Quebec train derailment that killed 47 people for a sequence depicting the world descending into chaos. Though Netflix confirmed the use of the footage, according to the BBC, the streaming site said it would not be removing it.

In rebuke, Canada’s parliament passed a motion on Wednesday saying Netflix is responsible for compensating the townspeople of Lac-Mégantic for using footage of the disaster in both Bird Box and their futuristic show Travelers, according to The Hollywood Reporter. They also voted to once again demand that Netflix remove the footage.

“We know people are going to go and watch this film, and again these real images will be used,” Canadian legislator Pierre Nantel said, according to THR. “For people in Lac-Megantic, they saw images of their own downtown burning, and could imagine their own family members in it.”

Quebec Train Derailment
2013 train disaster
| Credit: Lucas Oleniuk/Toronto Star/Getty Images

On July 6, 2013, an unmanned train derailed near the small town of Lac-Mégantic, causing millions of gallons of crude oil to spread over the surrounding area. The oil later ignited and tragedy ensued when 47 people died and half of the downtown area of the town was destroyed.

The town’s current mayor Julie Morin criticized Netflix’s decision to use the footage in the two instances.

“We find that it’s really a lack of respect,” Morin told Canadian press on Tuesday. “It’s hard enough for our citizens to see these images when they are used normally and respectfully on the news. Just imagine to have them used as fiction, as if they were invented.”

Oil Trains Cities, Lac-Megantic, Canada - 8 Jul 2013
2013 train disaster
| Credit: Uncredited/AP/REX/Shutterstock

Bird Box stars Bullock, 54, as a woman named Malorie who, along with her two children, comes face to face with an entity that takes the form of people’s worst fears. To reach safety, Malorie and her kids must escape the evil that chases them — and complete the trip blindfolded.

Bird Box is available to stream on Netflix now.