Sci-Fi Storm

Shyamalan expose a hoax

by on Jul.18, 2004, under General News

The SCI FI Channel’s documentary-turned-expose on filmmaker M. Night Shyamalan, entitled The Buried Secret of M. Night Shyamalan, is a complete hoax. The whole thing was a work of fiction, with Shyamalan in on it. Bonnie Hammer, president of SCI FI, called it a “guerilla marketing campaign” that went too far. Looks like she could be in hot water too – Rebecca Marks, NBC entertainment spokeswoman, said “This marketing strategy is not consistent with our policy at NBC.” NBC Universal is now the parent of the SCI FI Channel.

10 Comments for this entry

  • Anonymous Coward

    No duh

    What, you thought he had some big deep dark past?


  • mbourgon


    Come on, even looking at the ad it was obvious. Was anyone actually fooled by this?

    • Anonymous Coward


      I just thought back to the blair witch “documentary” they did a few years back. Knowing of that makes it even more obvious.

      • Anonymous Coward


        Here’s from another “Anonymous” – My husband spotted the “fakery” immediately, and I, too, thought of the Blair Witch documentary…but I am glad they did the Blair Witch “documentary” because it featured folks and sites from my home town in DeLand, Fla., and helped film folks from my alma mater, UCF, get their film really noticed! In this case, we’re not talking about some college grads who financed their film with their credit cards and prayed it would fly. We’re talking about established members of the filmmaking community. A fictional “documentary” about a fictional witch and fictional students looking into the fictional story is, in my book, quite different from a fraudulent presentation about an actual director. I got a kick out of the one (taking it no more seriously than those ghost and UFO “exposes” and the “alien autopsies”), but this was different, so we passed on the Sunday “Night” program.

    • Doc


      The media was. I think SCI FI went a lot further promoting this as real than the “Blair Witch” special, claming they “consulted with lawyers about its release, etc.

      I think we need a new classification for these. “Fake-umentaries”? “Docufakaries”?

      P.S. I was just reporting the news. Beyond Stargate I could care less what SCI FI is doing. I lost most respect for Bonnie Hammer a while ago when instead of actual SF programs from JMS and the like they put things like “Crossing Over” and “Scare Tactics” and the Big Brother freakshow clone. And where did all the classic shows go?

    • Anonymous Coward


      Further to what you all said… what bothered and worried me most was the programming time (3 hours!) that SCI FI channel gave it. Prior to watching it I actually thought Shyamalan was interesting. No more. It was ‘the movie’ before ‘the movie’ and I no longer care to see The Village.

  • The Hawke

    Well no wonder..

    SciFi’s programming went to the dogs.. NBC got their claws into the company’s programming and tore it all to hell.

    *sigh* another fine channel sucked up by the legions of the clueless clods of cookie-cutter programming.

    • Doc

      Re:Well no wonder..

      SFC went to the dogs long before NBC got hold of it, which was very recent.

      My ideal SFC is the way it was originally – classic series and short-lived series, plus movies and minis that never get reshown – plus original series, but none of the pseudo-reality crap.

      Bring back Sci-Fi Buzz, bring back that “future” new show they did in 30 second blurbs, bring back the Sci Fi Collection.

      SFC still has some brilliant moments (snatching Stargate, some upcoming stuff) but then they put the dunce the right back on (cancelling Farscape, etc.)

  • Zhyntil

    ummmm, I thought it was meant that way

    It was obvious to me that this was meant to be a hoax, the way it was filmed, the announcing, etc, are all similar to another set of ads from a while back…..for one of his movies maybe even

    and yes, the last part of that is me being sarcastic…..

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