Too soon? That's the question comedians ask themselves when they make a joke about a tragedy. The same could be asked of filmmakers who decide to take on sensitive topics like 9/11, the Holocaust, or the Titanic. One director has discovered that coming out with plans for a Sandy Hook-themed movie isn't such a great idea right now. Or maybe ever.
The French-born film director Jonathan Bucari, who has directed nothing anyone has ever heard of, announced plans on fundraising site Indiegogo to direct a film about a young boy with a mental illness who was severely affected by the Sandy Hook shootings. He said he planned to shoot the film in Ridgefield, Connecticut, a town near Newtown.
Almost immediately, the backlash began on Twitter, with people calling the director "opportunist slime" and telling him to "stay away" from the people of Connecticut. Bucari had told a local TV station that he planned to shoot in Ridgefield because it looked like Newtown. But Ridgefield local leaders said they wouldn't allow it.
Bucari argued that the movie wasn't about Sandy Hook, but merely incorporated the tragedy into another plotline. Even so, Bucari pulled down the Facebook page about the film and deactivated his Twitter account.
There's no doubt that someone someday will make a movie about Newtown. It's what Americans do. We make movies about tragedies. Seems to be how we cope with them, I guess -- turn it all into a good guy vs. bad guy thing. Americans love their fantasies.
There's just something distasteful about "dramatizing" the shooting. If something HAS to be done, I think a documentary is more appropriate. But maybe we could all do something extraordinary and NOT make this into a Lifetime movie or even one directed by Steven Spielberg. Maybe we should just sit with the reality.
Would you go see a movie about Sandy Hook?
Image via Timothy Tolle/Flickr