Netflix cuts real-life disaster footage out of Bird Box after criticism

Four months after it first appeared on Netflix, footage of a real-life rail disaster will be removed from the movie Bird Box, the post-apocalyptic thriller starring Sandra Bullock.

The stock footage used concerns a 2013 tragedy in the Québec town of Lac-Mégantic when an unattended train carrying crude oil rolled down an incline, came off the tracks and exploded, killing 47 people.

Earlier this year, the streaming giant said it would not remove the clip, which in Bird Box is used to illustrate mass deaths in the wake of an invasion of spectral beasts who cause a person’s worst fears to materialise, leading them to kill themselves.

But in a statement to TheWrap on Thursday, Netflix confirmed that both it and the makers of Bird Box have decided to replace the clip. They also apologised, saying: “We’re sorry for any pain caused to the Lac-Mégantic community.”

In response, Quebec’s minister of culture and communications, Nathalie Roy, praised the decision, saying it shows that “by uniting and pooling our efforts, everything is possible.”

In January, she wrote to the CEO of Netflix urging the company to have the clips removed. The process to replace the footage worldwide will take several weeks, the company said.


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