Film companies are famous for protecting their scripts and film footage from being leaked to awaking audiences. Now with how fast things travel across the internet (it doesn’t take long for something to be shared millions of times) films need to be protected now more than ever.
Do you remember when the script for Hateful Eight Script, the Quentin Tarantino picture, was leaked? Tarantino was still early on in his writing process when he threatened to scrap the entire project completely.
With films the creation of so many different people, often across different countries, it’s not surprising that production companies are going to extreme lengths to protect shows such as Game of Thrones, Stranger Things and comic book franchises a Avengers.
In fact, there is a bunker room in Los Angeles where, if you didn’t know better, you would think was the U.S President’s west coast home. It is, in fact, mere a writer’s room for Amazon. It has all the windows blacked out, security guards at each entrance and a fingerprint scanner to get in.
The story Amazon is working on in its bunker is set in the realm of the Lord of the Rings. The streaming show’s adaptation is rumoured to focus on the character of Aragorn, the man (spoiler alert) who is destined to be King of Gondor. The storyline is a prequel to The Fellowship of the Ring before Aragon meets Frodo. The general consensus was largely that the security measures were a tad bit overkill and the efforts to protect this sacred information were unnecessary. Afterall, we know how the story of Aragon ends up so how much of a spoiler can there be?
Fighting spoilers and plot leaks has been part of the course for the film industry but newer plays like Amazon, Netflix and HBO are beginning to realize something the more established film companies have known for some time. Secrecy not only protects unwanted eyeballs but also controls the mystique around the film process and Hollywood in general where image is everything. This secrecy can drive interest in a project and can control the narrative more tightly and stave off negativity on social media.
Game of Thrones, whose epic fantasy storyline concludes with its eighth season has been dogged by spoilers through its run. Two years ago, a hack saw the scripts for the seventh season leak, revealing nearly every plot twist, character development and death. HBO affiliates in other countries also accidentally aired two episodes several days early which of course then went viral online. With information spreading almost instantaneous such things can cause a disaster for film studios. With the final on the horizon, HBO is determined to prevent any more crucial storylines from getting out.
Thanks to the binge culture that Netflix first introduced into the general lexicon, people are also watching shows quicker now than ever before which they can then post about on Facebook and Twitter. So if you’re behind on popular shows like Riverdale, it only takes a single social media post for the show to be ruined.
This year, some of the biggest film franchise are coming to an end – Game of Thrones, the Star Wars trilogy and Marvel’s sprawling Avengers franchise – meaning there is even more at stake. Whether the hackers and thieves can outwit the studios is anybody’s guess.
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