When Hollywood films, shows predicted reality

The recent Notre Dame fire or Donald Trump’s US presidency or the 9/11 attacks. Call it a coincidence, but there have been films and television shows which have managed to show or allude to real-life events long before they have actually happened.





IANS lists such instances, especially after the Notre Dame fire in Paris got the social media world talking about how a reference was made to the iconic cathedral in the 2004 film “Before Sunset”.

* “Before Sunset” predicting Notre Dame fire: The horrifying scenes from Paris after a devastating blaze engulfed the iconic 850-year-old Notre-Dame Cathedral reminded of a scene from 2004’s “Before Sunset”. In a scene, actors Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy glance at the cathedral and he shares a legend with Delpy about its beauty. Delpy then says, “But you have to think that Notre Dame will be gone one day. There used to be another church or cathedral at the same. Right there.”

* “The Simpsons” predicting Disney’s acquisition of 21st Century Fox: In the episode titled “When You Dish Upon a Star” in 1998, there was a sign that read “20th Century Fox, a division of Walt Disney Co”.

Al Jean, one of the show’s original writers, had told The New York Times that this was in line with the writers’ forward-thinking process.

The deal “was just another one,” he said. “It happens. There’s always mergers. It seemed logical, you know?”

* “The Simpsons” predicting 9/11: In the 1997 episode “The City of New York vs Homer Simpson”, a moment alludes to the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Centre in New York. There is a frame where there’s a brochure that says New York at $9, and behind the nine was the twin towers, which looked like ‘9/11’.

* “The Man” predicting a black US President: In a scene in the 1972 film, when the President and Speaker of the House are killed in a building collapse, and the Vice President declines the office due to age and ill health, Senate President pro tempore suddenly becomes the first black man to occupy the Oval Office. Barack Obama became the first African American to be elected to the presidency.

* “The Simpsons” predicting Donald Trump’s presidency: In the 11th season of the show in 2000, “The Simpsons” depicted the Presidency of Donald Trump, who came to power 16 years later.

“As you know, we’ve inherited quite a budget crunch from President Trump,” the character Lisa, shown as the US President, says to her staff, who inform her the country is broke due to her predecessor.

Writer Dan Greaney, in an interview to The Hollywood Reporter, had explained: “It was a warning to America. And that just seemed like the logical last stop before hitting bottom. It was pitched because it was consistent with the vision of America going insane.”

* “The Cable Guy” predicting online gaming: Released in 1996, the film was a comedy thriller. Towards the end of the movie, Jim Carrey, playing Chip, a terrorising cable man, launches into a prophetic rant about shopping and gaming only a couple of years into the web’s existence.

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