Netflix Removes Controversial 'Bird Box' Footage of Real-Life Train Disaster After Backlash

Netflix has decided to remove footage of a devastating train derailment that killed 47 in Canada

sandra bullock in bird box
Photo: Saeed Adyani/netflix

Netflix is reversing its decision and removing footage from a real-life train disaster that was featured in its hit film 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 company initially said it would not be removing it.

After weeks of backlash, Netflix has agreed to cut the footage.

“We’re sorry for any pain caused to the Lac-Mégantic community,” a statement from Netflix read, without giving a reason for changing its decision, according to the BBC.

In January, Canada’s parliament passed a motion 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. They also voted to once again demand that Netflix remove the footage.

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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.

Quebec Train Derailment
Lac-Mégantic train disaster. Lucas Oleniuk/Toronto Star/Getty Images

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

“We find that it’s really a lack of respect,” Morin told Canadian press on Tuesdaythis link opens in a new tab. “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.”

Bird Box is streaming on Netflix.

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