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April 04 2006

IMdb reports on Joblo story... Apparently some people didn't get that it was an April Fools joke. How very depressing.

Well, at least we know where the "World Entertainment News Network" gets its so-called scoops.

[ edited by impalergeneral on 2006-04-04 12:11 ]
Oh man. *shakes head*
That is just....I have no words.
It really shows you how so many articles don't bother researching, anything!
I don't get it. He explicitly says that it's an April Fools joke in the end of the article. Does people just stop reading after the first few lines or is the oppurtunity to stur up gossip too juicy to pass up... Well, atleast we know that the buzz is rampaging.

[ edited by Djungelurban on 2006-04-04 13:01 ]
"Does people just stop reading after the first few lines..."

People stop reading after the headline sometimes.

Too paraphrase (rip off) somebody or another; nobody ever went broke underestimating the human race.
"There's no such thing as bad publicity"

Brendan Behan
Amazing - well I guess they didn't read far enough to find out it was an April Fools joke, or far enough for some of the "Joss" quotes!
Let's just hope that this huge press faux pas doesn't pressure the studio into casting Beckinsale.

'Cuz I'm not wanting this to be Underworld: Magic Lasso.
This really goes to show how much power we have! We could start a 'news' group do mostly true stories and then on occassion add a faux one with the bottom line stating "HA! HA! You've just been pranked!". We could start craziness! Feel the power and control over the feebleminded media! MUHAHAHAHA! *cough* *looks around*
Apart from the sheer idiocy of this, what saddens me is that such tasteless comments were attributed to Joss in the hoax article, and these are now being taken as verbatim statements, apparently.
palehorse - people would actually have to read the article to see those statements ;) Run "beckinsale wonder woman" through a search engine and be astonished at the other sites that have picked it up...
Journalism, like chivalry, is (un)dead.
This is surreal - how can people publish things from an article they didn't even bother to read?
This is surreal - how can people publish things from an article they didn't even bother to read?

Because it's the internet, it's more important to be the first one to post it than to be correct.
Amazing, just amazing. I marveled at the sheer stupidity at first but then I too realized it's really because no one can be bothered to actually read an article before posting it on their own site.

No wait, that's still sheer stupidity.
Ahhh... the IMDb "news" section. The entertainment tabeloid of the internet. The only entertainment site that is less credible (IMO) is that Contact Music site.

BTW - the IMDb folks know that it's crap, but they farm it out and apparently don't have a lot of control over the content. They get more complaints over that then anything else on the site - now if I could just find the article about that. IIRC it was a local (Seattle) invterview with one of the IMDb folks who was a judge at the film festival.

That said, I read it everyday, if only to see how long it takes them to print the retraction!
You want to see this report, it's even worse.

English beauty Kate Beckinsale is said to be fronting the race to be appointed the lead actress in the new Wonder Woman flick.

Director Joss Whedon and co-writer William M Marston, director of the 1976 original, are believed to have been impressed after meeting the British babe and could be about to offer her the role.

Beckinsale, star of Van Helsing and Underworld, has also recently reaffirmed her desire to land the part in the upcoming comic book movie.

"I want Wonder Woman right now," she said. "I'm not holding my breath, but I'm crossing my fingers and toes and praying."

William Marston was the creator of Wonder Woman. He died in 1947. I'm assuming Joss and Joel did not dig up his corpse and then go and see Kate.

And secondly Charisma Carpenter said those fingers and toes remarks. It's just pitiful. I make damn sure at Whedonesque that what I say is accurate and then there's "journalists" who do a half arsed sloppy inaccurate badly researched job like this.
Wow... I have no words for this...
That's hysterical (in a pitiful way), Simon. And zeitgeist, that's just amazing. Jeez.

ETA: zeitgeist, since we posted simultaneously, I should add that I am, of course, referring to your comment to my comment above.

[ edited by palehorse on 2006-04-04 17:24 ]
Oh Simon, I'm shocked and also mortified.
We have a great show in Oz called Media Watch, I wish we had something like that on the net. Keeping the bastards honest.

Honestly, I'm starting to get a little concerned that some Hollywood heavys might actually take to the idea. Oh bimbo for Wondy Gal. : (
I'm studying journalism this year, and this is just, well, the opposite of what journalism is supposed to be. *shakes head*
I think "mortified" is the perfect word to describe my feelings on this, nixy.
I'm rather horrified that Joss is put in the position to refute those comments. As we all know, if everyone believes that it is true then it really doesn't matter what the facts are. He's damned if he does say something and damned if he doesn't.

It isn't even's fault that people didn't read the entire article. They are probably wondering how to initiate damage control before someone screams lawsuit or defamation of character.
William Marston was the creator of Wonder Woman. He died in 1947. I'm assuming Joss and Joel did not dig up his corpse and then go and see Kate.

Guess someone, must've found a spare Urn of Osiris lying somewhere. LOL.

As someone who deals with journalist oftenly, as much as some people want blindly believe, Journalism isn't an exact science like Math, as they want to believe.

Mistakes tend to happen more oftenly, due to how fast a information can be spread nowadays. Several professionals, are forced to consider speed, over re-checking for information validity. Speed has become even more important in the selling pitch for News Agencies.

Nowadays, several journalists rely mainly on reliability of common sources, so they don't need to re-check every new information they get.
This is probably partially in part due to Marston being listed as (creator) on imdb for the 70's series and a number of things since then. Someone took a quick look, didn't pay attention to the little numbers at the top that list his dates of birth & death and voila!
Oh, I totally predicted that people would take this seriously. How funny. The article even says at the very end that it's a joke. Geez. I'm not so worried that this will cause pressure to cast Beckinsale though. I'm more worried that people will really think Joss is a male chauvenist. Hopefully these people don't actually read the AFD article.

[ edited by ElectricSpaceGirl on 2006-04-04 18:43 ]
And Joss' quote of being, "very happy" in their article... I wonder if they read that between the "dumb as a brick" and "big boobs".

Internet Movie Data Base. There are no words.
Entertainment news is the worst kind of journalism out there, as they rarely check their sources, or in this case read the whole damn article they were quoting. At times it can work like a broken telephone game, with each time the story pops up, there's more facts missing and more quotes distorted and taking even more things out of context.

Next time you read some entertainment news that has been reduced to a sound bite and seems kind of wrong or kind of off, do an internet search to track down the source of the news and often you will find the original source to be very, very different from that sound bite you heard. Also the original source could end up being very unreliable, a tabloid or even just a message board.

I should know since my own analysis on how much Serenity might have made on a comic book message board was posted on various websites such as, only then other sites began picking it up and reporting it as real news and the various details falling through the cracks.
Joblo's comment on the situation:

[ edited by zeitgeist on 2006-04-04 20:10 ]
(snork) I'm speechless. Speechless.

Well, not entirely--I can't decide whether it's tragedy or comedy.
There are such things as "tragecomedies" back in the days of the ancient greeks. I think it fits nicely.
MySerenity - There should only be Greeks!

In reaction to this interesting (and possibly, sadly inevitable) turn of events, like so many others here I can only shake my head. I want to laugh long and loud but I know that if I do it will eventually lead to quiet sobbing (and deservedly strange looks from my co-workers). So, I must simply do this

*shakes head*

and be done with it.

My experience with the news is that when you know what really happened you find that newssources often hardly can write a one column article without some little mistake or other (usually not that bad, but I once won something which was reported in quite a few places and half of them misspelled my name, got my age wrong and that kind of things).

However that a lot of ``journalists`` can't even be bothered to read an entire article, or doublecheck things (even when published on April fools day, of all times) somehow still amazes me (though it shouldn't).

A site like this really helps though, because here there are actually people closer to the source, who can weed out gossip from the true things, while a decade ago I would have had to just rely on those professional newssources.
I've got this tripe populating the top of my Joss Whedon newsfeed on Google news right now...
Looks like Ireland Online are running the same story as InTheNews. There's a heaps of websites going with this one now. Now, we have to wait for Joss to respond. It's ridiculous.

ETA: Just read's reaction. Friggin' priceless!!

[ edited by nixygirl on 2006-04-05 00:04 ]
Here's the link to the reaction:
Man. Now I'll never be able to spread a rumor about me getting the part. People are going to be checking their sources more carefully and that's really a good thing.
Wow. Someone at a box office website just posted it. I find this whole thing rather priceless. I mean, people at World of KJ (the box office site) are rather well-versed (you'd think, anyway) on movies and rumors etc, yet one of them also bought the lies lies lies lies. Goldie though, so that isn't surprising. I know you don't know who that is, so i'll just trail off...
This is hilarious. Basically, what's happened is this: it starts as a joke story. Somebody copied it as a real story by mistake. A site copied the 'real' story site story (lost yet?), and IMDB copied that. Then, everybody copied IMDB, and now all the other sites are copying the other sites which copied the other sites which copied the other sites which wrote a joke about Whedon hiring Kate for a blowjob (that's what the original article said).

The term: chinese whispers. The price: priceless. For everything else: there's Mastercard.

I wonder if Joss will correct everybody that's it is really Dame Judy Dench, you know.
I am amazed that more sites keep posting this even as we speak.
... which makes you wonder if there is a secret conspiracy cabal somewhere, which leveraged this AFD joke as a way to get KB's name further associated with the part. Oh, heck, we can skip the conspiracy--maybe it's just her agent.
Well, it was reported on Australian National TV this morning. Oh dear.
I am very amused.
nixygirl, that was the final nail in the coffin. Since we all know that if it is on TV then it is true. Entirely too many people are completely convinced this is true.

This is very very sad.
All I can say is, thank God it hasn't been reported on Australian National Television.
Filmstew, another on-line film mag has also been fooled.
Sweet Lord! This just keeps getting worse and worse.

And it's scary. Please, Joss, tell the press it was just a joke. I so do not want Beckinsale to have a better chance of getting the part because of this.
I'm suprised by how many "respectable" news sources are reporting this as fact. You'd think that papers like the San Jose Mercury News and Chicago Sun-Times would at least check the web site they are quoting before reporting this stoty.
I emailed the guy at Filmstew telling them it was an April Fool's Joke. Many of these sites are copying verbatim from the IMDB/WENN article.

[ edited by killinj on 2006-04-05 14:56 ]
I find this very interesting. I guess this happens all the time but this is the first time I have followed and observed the process of misinformation so closely. I read the original post, went to the site, read the article and, since it was so ridicules I laughed a bit - April's Fool joke - and now it is being spread as true, this is just amazing to me.

Loved JoBlo's response.

I'm with orphea - I'm amused.
I've always been afraid some of the "quotes" could come back to haunt Joss in years to come. That is why the original article bothered me when I read it, even though it was obviously a joke to anyone who knew Joss's way of speaking. I could see someone pulling lines out of this years from now as an example of how his feminism was a sham, what a jerk he really is, etc.

So, no. Not amused. Just a bit depressed.
derf - The San Jose Mercury News did too? Nooo! They're one of the few papers I still had real respect for.

newcj - I was worried about the "quotes" tarnishing Joss' reputation and work as a feminist. So many people love his work and we're not all on whedonesque, it'd be sad for people to lose out because these papers didn't set the record straight. And for Joss to lose ground when he's worked so hard.

hey - here's an idea -
What do you think of writing letters to the editor for offending papers?

If I can get a hell yeah from anyone else, I'd be happy to write the SJ Mercury News.
Here's a blog from the Philadelphia Inquirer pointing out the April Fool's joke:
Well newcj, it is bad... but this happens all of the time. If it wasn't these quotes it will be something else. I think I remember instances of Josh Wheldon, or Jewel Staite his wife etc. Just b/c there was a chance this would happen like you fear(and it did), it doesn't mean an april fools joke like that should not have occured. It may be a bit distasteful for some people, but I found it humourous. And actually I am kind of glad it happened, because something as bad as this rumour, opened my eyes to how "trustworthy" these news organizations are. I was aware of it vaguely, but I figured I would take their word for it, now I am not. As mentioned before, I am very thankful for a site like whedonesque, where I can find reliable information about a topic that is important to me: All things Whedon.

[ edited by kurya on 2006-04-05 18:30 ]
Misspelling Joss' name or giving him 2 wives is not the same as attributing to him nasty quotes. So I'm with newcj on this one.
Yeah, me too. My stomach hurts a little whenever I read this thread. This kind of stuff happens all the time, I'm sure... but it shouldn't have happened to Joss.

Feels gross and tacky.
At the bottom of the FilmStew report it now reads:

[In the end, Lohan and especially Carpenter may be breathing a big sigh of relief as the entire report was a big April Fool's joke!!]
You'd think some newspaper or website would enjoy jumping on this story to report what gullible rubes the other newspapers/websites are for reporting an April Fools joke as a fact! Wouldn't reporting on how a hoax gets out of hand make a great story? So why isn't someone, other than JoBlo itself (and I guess the Philadelphia Inquirer blog), writing that?!
In fairness, the only site with the "blowjob" quote from Whedon is the original Joblo article. And that is _clearly_ an April fools joke - it even says it is. So I don't think this is damaging Whedon's reputation at all. In fact, it's probably just giving him, and the project, publicity.

Completely false publicity, though. 3 major newspapers have also ran the story today, even mentioning the fact it comes from Joblo, but they obviously haven't even read the site they mention, which is fantastic. This is really eye opening. Somebody should really contact all the editors for these publications and give them a rocket up the arse.
I noticed and was thankful that the worst "quotes" had not been quoted...yet...or at least not in the linked articles I read. I am saying that things hang around once they are put out there. I am afraid that down the road people will pull these "quotes" out of their a cyberspace somewhere and be absolutely sure Joss said it because it was in an article. I have this tendency to think long term...
But then newcj, should the April Fool's joke never have happened? That should remove the joke article permanently? Even though explicitly in the article it does say April Fools Joke? I am sure there may be "long term consequences", but that should be indicative of a greater problem within the reporting world that should be dealt with?

Oh and have people thought about complaining to WENN about this bad reporting? Especially since they were the ones that initiated this (forgive my language) shitstorm? I managed to find their site. And I can venture to guess that one of the main reasons this is appearing all over, because various news sites probably suscribe to this news agency for entertainment news, and probably got that article in the feed.

They have contact info there, but I am not sure who would contact, and whether email is sufficient or should someone phone them?

[ edited by kurya on 2006-04-05 22:29 ]
I imagine that the studio is enjoying the free publicity. It doesn't hurt the movie any if there have been some minor freak outs online about who is going to be cast as Wonder Woman. I don't imagine anyone feels that Kate has to be hired just because imdb picked up an April Fool's joke and reported it as fact.
Embers, the thing is, it's not just IMDB or online sites - it's in double digits of main stream newspapers now. Also on TV. Which isn't, of course, any big problem - I just find it deeply amusing. I don't find the quotes thing worrying at all - Joss never said those things, the source is clearly an April Fools joke, so if anybody is stupid enough to reuse those quotes for real then, well, they're an (april) fool. The real problem is the opposite, really - people obviously haven't read the original article, and seen the Joss quotes. When a director (apparently) says he hired his lead because he wants to "bang" them in an article, I suspect anybody who actually read it would go "Oh. Ahem. Bye now."

[ edited by gossi on 2006-04-06 01:12 ]

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