So many people have benefited from Quentin Tarantino’s “Django Unchained”. The viewers, the Quentin fans, the celebrities who got to work with Quentin, and Quentin himself (read: awards and award nominations). Oh no wait, one other person has benefited from the whole “Django Unchained” fame – thenimbus.
Who is “thenimbus”? Whoever he/she is, a post went up on his/her Tumblr stating that “Django Unchained” actor, Ato Essandoh (who plays D’Artagnan in the film) died “in the line of duty” during the production of the film. How?
Torn apart alive by dogs? Sure sounds like one of the worst ways to die. Anyone who has encountered the post above must’ve tried real hard to battle between feeling sorry for Ato plus the entire cast and crew of “Django Unchained” and applauding the actor for being so dedicated to his job.
The best part of it is Ato Essandoh tweeted, seemingly from “beyond the grave” to uh, “clarify” the situation:
Yes, guys. Of course it was a hoax. But a hoax that went viral (it was reblogged over tens of thousands of times) within hours of it going up on that Tumblr.
thenimbus, owner of the Tumblr and person who created the hoax then put up another post to apologize to Quentin Tarantino, Leonardo DiCaprio, and Ato Essandoh for the hoax. He/she also made it a point to not apologize to anyone else who were offended by it, claiming that it was just harmless sarcasm and a social experiment:
No, none of it was real. It was completely fake. What a surprise!
Ato Essandoh is very much alive and well. I take full responsibility for the post and I’d like to take this oppertinity to apologize to Quentin Tarantino, Leonardo DiCaprio, and Ato Essandoh. I truly admire all of your work tremendously and loved Django to death, pun intended. Thanks for being good sports. ♥
However, I’m not going to apologize to those who were offended by this, and I will explain why in this post.
I made that image as a social experiment to prove how gullible people can be on the internet, and in this case Tumblr. The image was created in the vein of the popular “did you know” bloggers, many who often post erroneous information to begin with, in about ten minutes using Adobe Photoshop. This also wasn’t a racist thing; because of the actual well known incident with DiCaprio injuring his hand, I felt that it would be more of a reason for people to do their research to see if it was really true, but unfortunately many chose to just immediately accept the post as fact. It was intended to cause an uproar from people who didn’t do their research, in turn, letting them make fun of themselves for our own amusement. Ignorant bloggers that repost something shocking for the sheer amazement of the it without fact checking the very validity of the thing that they are reblogging are very unfortunate souls indeed. I pity them greatly.
The level of credulousness on the internet nowadays is absolutely appalling. Literally anyone with an internet connection can easily search the net for articles. Seriously now. It’s 2013, not 1995. We have amazing internet searches like Google, plenty of reputable news sites like CNN, and many fact checking sites like Snopes for us to utilize. Whoever doesn’t use these free vast resources is just plain lazy. For instance, remember when I mentioned that “Tarantino later said in a groundbreaking interview with Mike Wallace of 60 Minutes”? Mike Wallace retired from 60 minutes in 2006 and died last year. I mean, hell, the tags I put were right there, “If you fell for this you are most likely a gullible child” and ”Mike Wallace died in 2012”.
Also, the very concept of an actor signing his life away for a film is so unrealistic and downright stupid, that the only place you’d hear it other than from me would be from a parody news source like The Onion, and they do this shit all the damn time without any uproar. It’s a flat out obvious parody. So I misinformed the public, so what? Advertisers do it for a living. It’s our obligation as intelligent users of the internet to dig into things like this and prove them false, as well as prove ourselves to not be accepting lemmings. Sure, no one deserves to be falsely accused of murder, but this wasn’t accusation that had any credibility whatsoever, save for a Tumblr-grade official design. In other words, if you fell for it, it’s completely your fault for not looking into it.
In short, what I did was nothing more than harmless sarcasm, and whoever believed it or got offended by it are individuals that either mindlessly believe everything they read on the net without doing research, ignorant doofs who actually believe that something like this could happen, social justice zealous who live to be powder kegs for offense, or are just too young to understand that movies aren’t actually real.
[END SOCIAL EXPERIMENT]
Uh, at the very least Ato Essandoh played along, no?