On Wednesday a 35-year-old swimmer was killed by a Great White shark just outside Sydney. This was the first fatal shark attack in the area since 1963. The size of the shark and the speed and ferocity of the attack have been captured on camera due to a large number of witnesses all, of course, with cellphones. As a result, the attack has gained more notoriety than many others as the footage circulates worldwide, adding to a sense of shock over the attack.
In response to this, Channel 9 in Australia took the decision to cancel a screening of Jaws that was set to air on Thursday.
Jaws is not the first movie to be affected like this. This is not an uncommon occurrence. Following the Columbine school shootings in the US, the movie Killing Mrs. Tingle was renamed Teaching Mrs. Tingle and the release was delayed.
In the wake of 9/11 everything from a trailer to Spider-Man to the entire release of an Arnold Schwarzenegger movie was changed.
After shootings in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio, Universal paused marketing on The Hunt, a thriller in which the wealthy elite hunt down other human beings for sport, completely and then altered the entire release strategy.
The finale of Mr. Robot season one was delayed in 2015 after an on-air shooting in Virginia, and the premiere of the Ryan Phillippe drama Shooter was delayed multiple times due to similar events.
Paramount’s Heathers also pulled and edited episodes several times for the same reason, while American Horror Story: Cult edited a mass-shooting scene as a direct response to the Las Vegas shooting in 2017.
These delays and cancelations, in response to real-world events, are so common that in 2017, BoJack Horseman dedicated an entire episode to the phenomenon, openly mocking it as futile.
The victim of the shark attack has been named as a British diving instructor who lived in Australia and had been training for the Malabar ocean swim. Police and ambulance services said he died instantly from the catastrophic nature of the injuries.
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