Dear Lifetime: Maybe Flint Isn’t Ready For Your Movie About Our Crisis [OPINION]
The people here are still suffering through this, yet you and a select few will profit off of it?
It almost seemed like a headline from The Onion when we heard about it last year - Lifetime (which is a joke in and of itself, and they know it - if you haven't watched A Deadly Adoption, it's time for a viewing party) announced that they'd be filming a movie about the Flint water crisis...while the water crisis is still ongoing.
Not only is the movie going to debut in October, but it wasn't even shot IN FLINT. It was shot in Toronto, and filming wrapped in May.
How the hell are you gonna film a movie about our city in TORONTO? We started a petition back in April to have the movie filmed here (or parts of it, at least...is that too much to ask?), and it reached almost 15,000 signatures.
We never heard from Lifetime or Storyline Entertainment, regarding this petition.
I was told by somebody, who shall remain unnamed (but is involved with the film) that our petition would "hurt" the film, that the Governor blocked the studios from filming in Michigan and that Flint's story needs to be told.
I don't disagree with the latter part of this - the story NEEDS to be told. But not right now. And not this way.
Great, so the rest of the world will understand what we've known all along - that this was a systematic failing of our government, on a local and state level, to its people. People got sick. People died. Children are forever damaged from this. And people are STILL picking up cases of water on a regular basis (did you hear that some of the water distribution stations will be permanently closing in the next week?)
As of a week ago, we had a friend who lives in one of the affected zip codes still asking for a shower filter.
The people of this city aren't ready for a movie about their struggle, while the struggle is still real. They're not ready to watch YOUR profits soar, while they pick up cases of water. The celebrities, the media and the politicians showed up here last year, yelled about the outrage...and left. And it didn't fix the problem. What makes you think that YOUR film will make a difference? Is that your intent? Or is your intent to exploit our city's plight? How many people from Flint did you contact for their opinions and stories, other than the select few portrayed in your film?
I'll stop ranting now, and allow social media to do the talking.