Wow. People Are Crap

As you know, I started doing the Sunshine website two years ago. My role was to be the eyes and ears of the film for the fans. I was on set every day writing about the filming process. When that was finished and it entered its long post-production stage, I continued to write on the site about all things ‘solar’. When the film was being released internationally (but not in the US and Canada) I wrote about that, collecting both print articles and tv spots from around the world to share with everyone. The whole process was fun and joyous. I LOVED it. At times it was really hard work – *you* try writing about one film for two years without talking about the plot, the actors or, really, anything to do with it at all! – but it was always a genuine joy.

Then it opened in the US.

Now, I’ve got nothing to do with the US release of the film whatsoever. I stopped updating the site shortly after the international release until I was hired to work on the international DVD release (August 27th in the UK, kids!)… but since the US release, the blog has been inundated with nasty and hate-filled comments, the like of which I have NEVER seen in the previous two years.

Many of the nasty comments are directed at Fox because the film wasn’t released in some tiny town in the sticks somewhere and the commenter is so angry that they decide to hurl abuse at my site. (My answer: move to a city) There are also a lot of comments aimed directly at me – mainly things about how ‘No one gives a shit about what you think. Fuck you! Shut up! And just tell us when the soundtrack is being released!!’

Whereas I used to be excited to check Sunshine’s comments and really enjoyed having conversations with people, I now genuinely dread it. I hardly approve any comments anymore and don’t even bother to answer people’s questions about the film.

I, of course, don’t expect everything to be ‘sweetness and light’ at all… but I have never expected the level of hostility I’m seeing in the comments. I mean, sure, I understand that there can be hostility when it’s something like arguing about religion or politics, but when it’s about a film not being released in their tiny town or about the soundtrack not being released (yet)??! Save your anger for something important…

Jesus. It makes one think that Americans really are well and truly whacked in the head. I never got anything like this from *any* of the other countries the film opened in…

Comments
28 Responses to “Wow. People Are Crap”
  1. Hugh says:

    That’s really shocking….. I’ve not been checking the site for a while – I just let my RSS reader tell me when you’ve posted something new, and I’ve not been reading the comments, but it’s really not on to hurl that kind of stuff at an individual, for whatever reason….

    It is, I suppose, the IMDb mentality (every now and then, when I’m feeling like annoying myself, I’ll read the comments on an IMDb forum for a film, but in general, the IMDb forums are seemingly the lowest of any film-related ones…..)

    DVD is coming out soon, though! Makes up for everything else….

  2. Dragon says:

    I don’t read the IMDB comments but I’d go so far as it’s the AICN mentality – I’ve never read such rubbish in my life as the talkback on that site. Hate filled bile spewing from the mouths of people who should STFU for the most part. Anyway, I don’t know if you’ve seen this but it pretty much sums up what you’re encountering: http://www.penny-arcade.com/comic/2004/03/19

    On a side note, if I buy the DVD, will you sign it for me? ;)

  3. Mike says:

    Hey Gia – yep people do suck. Then they suck harder. Then they suck with a vengeance and when you think you’ve seen the last of them they come back and suck 4.0.

    But with all the personal info that people stick up on Facebook and other social networking sites these days I see a glorious time ahead when freelancers like myself can be hired to take a trip from door to door and slap some sense into these morons, Jay & Silent Bob style.

    I wonder if it’s a growing trend too. You can hardly look at the comments on YouTube that feature a talented woman and not see the words ‘rape’ and ‘bitch’ thrown around. The sooner the ants get their act together and get rid of us the better.

    Don’t let the bastards grind you down. Sunshine was a fantastic movie, but I got an even greater kick out of it thanks to all your hard work on the website. To hell with DVD extras – YOUR approach to that movie should be the blueprint for ALL future releases and anyone who thinks different is an arse.

  4. giagia says:

    Dragon – get Brian to sign it! At least he’s done a DVD commentary, which is actually *brilliant*, genuinely one of the most interesting DVD commentaries I’ve heard. I’ve not listened to Danny’s yet though (don’t tell him!), which I am *very* keen to do!

    Mike – haha! Yea, well… the DVD extras on ‘Sunshine’ are pretty cool and luckily I’ve got some to put up online over the next 10 days. Heh…

  5. Nicholas says:

    Well I’d first like to state that I don’t believe all Americans are fucked in the head. Really I swear! Now about the DVD, would Brian really sign it? I’d like mine signed, “At least one American Q-Ball that isn’t f*#cked in the head.” I would want to actually use the word fucked, since I don’t know how I would explain that to parents….but it would still be cool to tell everyone what that dedication was all about!

  6. giagia says:

    Haha! Well, I’m sure he’d be happy to sign DVDs (she says without asking him first)… Of course, all Americans aren’t fucked in the head. I’m one and I’m not *that* fucked in the head…

  7. jasmine says:

    Well, I live in San Francisco, which is probably not at all representative, but none of the people I live and work with are like that. When I’ve opined that YouTube commenters should be sterilized to prevent them from spreading their defective genes, people have agreed with me.

    On a vaguely related note, I actually managed to see Sunshine a couple of weeks ago- isn’t it aping 2001 *so* hard? They even did the “HAL lobotomy” sequence. Wow. I liked it, though. I wasn’t expecting it to be such a slasher pic, though!

  8. Penny says:

    Yikes! I’m sorry you are going through that, Gia! You know, I’ve read somewhere that the anonymity of cyber-communications (email, blogging, forums) makes people more likely to spew the kind of obnoxious bullshit you are afflicted with. You can be sure that NONE of these assholes would *DARE* say any of this crap to your face, or even over the phone, but because they are online and faceless, they feel that they can get away with it. This is why I’ll probably never have a blog or Facebook page and limit my participation in forums to those that have strict rules to ensure civility. Without those rules, any given forum will quickly become a flame-pit.

    I agree RE what Mike said: Don’t let the bastards get you down; you’ve done an *outstanding* job! I can’t *tell* you how many times I’ve blown an hour or two blissfully surfing around the sunshinedna website.

    RE DVD & soundtrack signing, I’d love to get my copies signed too, but I live in Virginia, which is a long way from the UK, so is not doable. Oh well.

    Jasmine: I noted the ‘lobotomy’ sequence too, although thankfully the one in ‘Sunshine’ wasn’t as drawn out as the one in ‘2001’. Also, if you think YouTube commenters are bad, you should see the mental-defectives that populate some forums! I’ve lurked on Illuminati-R-Us and Godlike Productions a few times; there was always at least one on-going flame war that I’d walk in on.

  9. That is so disappointing to hear. I found out about the film from your wonderful writing about it and was quite excited about the film and when it finally arrived here in Canada I was very happy to have it meet my expectations. The Sunshine site is practically a textbook of how to do a proper film site and I truly appreciate the work that you’ve done.
    I can’t wait for the DVD and the extras!
    Thanks for everything you’ve done, Gia. For every negative comment there are dozens of people who have seen and appreciated the site, but haven’t taken the time to let you know.

  10. giagia says:

    Jasmine_ there are loads and loads of little things throughout ‘Sunshine’ from ‘2001’ and ‘Alien’ mainly. When I saw the ‘lobotomy’ thing I loved it! Some people have got almost violently angry about those little things though… but they are just nerdy homages to films that Danny and Alex love in the same way Kevin Smith filmed a whole scene in ‘Chasing Amy’ exactly like a scene in ‘Jaws’ or Simon Pegg fills every thing he does with little nods to things *he* loves.

    I don’t get why Kevin Smith or Simon Pegg can do it and it’s “cool”, but when Danny does it some people say he’s a “hack”? Er, cos they are wankers perhaps?

  11. mdo says:

    Sometimes it’s just embarrassing to be American. Flamers, loudnouths, and idiots in the U.S. are either remarkably common or remarkably prolific. Or both. They are indeed fucked in the head and they LOVE to fill out a comment form.

    I know and you know that we aren’t all like that, but frankly quite a number of us clearly are. And it’s depressing. I can totally understand why some American travelers walk around with little Canadian flags on their backpacks.

  12. jasmine says:

    Don’t get me wrong, I loved Sunshine, it was great! I really liked 2001, see, and so therefore Sunshines reverent references to it were really rather nice.

    I just wish they’d carried on a little longer at the end so we could have seen the world warming up…

  13. Amanda says:

    They could’ve just quit being idiots and driven someplace to see it. Carpool, make a fun daytrip, etc., etc. That’s what *I* did and I’d already seen the film. Americans are asshats. End of. Mostly, though, I’m just sorry you have to deal with that sort of abuse. It’s frustrating and tiring, and, worst of all, disappointing.

  14. Jase says:

    The biggest problem is that now you have a blog entry where the title of the window becomes “Wow. People Are Crap at ::gia’s blog::”.

    Which is a bit harsh. :)

  15. giagia says:

    Heheh…

  16. Penny says:

    Amanda, I had to giggle over the word ‘asshat’ in your post. I have this picture in my mind of people walking around with bowlers or fedoras glued to their behinds…. ;)

  17. vince says:

    hey Gia where did you get all that bling in the photo header with a gold skirt? I love a bit of bling when you going to pose for me with all that bling?

  18. giagia says:

    The ‘bling’ picture is from Daywatch. *^_^*

  19. vince says:

    oh bummer I’ll have to get you some D&G bling then.. >;-)

  20. Nicholas says:

    I figured that out (Daywatch) just a few days ago. I saw the movie with a Russian friend of mine and she loved it! I guess there are scenes and people in that movie that are something like inside jokes or references for Russians that I totally didn’t get until she explained them to me.
    But why did you switch from Sunshine to Daywatch, and why did you pick Daywatch?

  21. giagia says:

    Nicholas – Well, Sunshine comes out on DVD next Monday – the 27th- after that there’s nothing else to do on it. It will officially be finished (boo :-(… I was asked about 6 months ago to work on Daywatch and as I really loved Nightwatch so I was happy to work on it. I’m also doing stuff for the 28 Weeks Later DVD release, too… :)

    Do you remember any of the inside jokes in Daywatch? I suspected that in both Day and Night Watch there was an element of culturally specific stuff that was passing me by…

  22. Nicholas says:

    Gia,
    She said there were a lot of famous, or at least famous enough that she recognized them, people in both the party at the end and in the classroom in the beginning. She also pointed out a part that was filmed in St. Petersburg rather then Moscow, and that apparently at one point Yegor was drinking a juice called Evil in Russian.
    I just checked on line and the wikipedia article does mention and clarify some of these, as well as mention others. I just felt it was kind of delightful that my friend enjoyed that aspect of the movie so much! She is the same friend that I took to 28 Weeks Later, and she liked it enough that she was going to rent 28 days. My girlfriend refers to her as my “scary movie” date!

  23. H says:

    Missed Sunshine in the cinema (just moved to London and friendless, sob – still pretty much friendless, double sob) so looking forward to the DVD.

    I suppose the anger could be a sign of their anticipation but there’s better ways of showing it (much like the wait for Helvetica to come to London; only thirty times geekier and seventy times less mainstream).

  24. Nathan says:

    I remember first coming across you on facebook and finding the group there, I posted a question and you answered, which meant at a lot at the time – that you found the time to pop me a few words, since then I’ve been reading your blog and keeping an eye on the facebook group. I just wanted to say thank-you, I really appreciated all your efforts promoting the film and helping to form a community – it’s great to have a forum for other Sunshine fans to share there love of the film. So sorry to hear that you’ve been receiving hate comments, and interesting that none of it was a problem before the US release.

  25. michael says:

    I think you need to understand that Americans might be pissed at you because you seem to avoid giving any sunshine news or info for the US release. We’re dying to hear about such a great film, and you come off as indifferent to Americans’ interest. Im sure you explained why that is, but you cant expect people to know where that tidbit of reasoning is posted. Yeah, people can be jerks when they know they dont have to answer for their comments, but just delete the bad stuff. Dont blame all “Americans” for those comments, there are plenty of us reading your blog and dna site that enjoy it, but simply dont post back to you that often. let it roll off.

  26. giagia says:

    Thanks, Michael. You know, I guess it’s all cos I didn’t work on the US release so have no idea about what they are doing (or not doing) at any given moment. And whether or not thy decide to show videos FILLED with spoilers before the film is out, has nothing to do with me. And if the lawyers keep going on and on and on w the soundtrack has nothing to do with me… but I’m the only person even vaguely connected with the film who is ‘available’ to shout at…so I get it all. I know, I should just let it roll off.

    And I’m American, too… :)

  27. giagia says:

    I’ve still been getting shitty comments. One person had their name as ‘FuckingLiars’ and their email address was a combination of ‘you fucking liar’ and the message was about me lying about the soundtrack… Here’s another one which isn’t directed at me specifically, but is still filled with ‘violence’ “This lawyer crap is a bunch of b.s. Release the damn soundtrack before I lose it and punch somebody in the face.

    I mean…

  28. Penny says:

    These ugly comments were *all* coming from American IPs?? The latter commenter (‘This lawyer crap is a bunch of…’) clearly forgot to take his/her olanzapine/Prozac/Valium that day.