As families of those missing on Malaysian flight MH370 were notified today via text message that their relatives almost assuredly did not survive, at least one effort is being made to address the situation sensitively. Arclight Films has put on hold production of the thriller Deep Water, a movie that tells the story of a plane that crashes into the ocean on the way to China. Of course, most of the similarities end there: The survivors soon find themselves surrounded by vicious killer sharks, rather than being ripped apart by a far more relentless 24-hour news cycle, as Deep Water was technically developed as a “loose sequel” to the Chinese horror hit Bait 3-D. Still, the timing is obviously uncomfortable, at a moment when it’s difficult to sell any disaster-in-the-air stories that don’t involve Liam Neeson keeping everyone aloft with gusts of white-hot rage.
Adding to the odd coincidences, this isn’t the first instance of Deep Water’s director, Alistair Grierson, working on a film with a regrettably timed link to real-life tragedy. As The Hollywood Reporter notes, Grierson released his 2011 film Sanctum, about “an underwater cave diving exhibition that turns into a watery, heart-pounding catastrophe,” a mere two weeks before devastating floods hit Australia. Still, despite a track record that would give any reasonable character in a Twilight Zone episode pause, Grierson insists to The Guardian that production will continue on Deep Water—pointing out that it won’t hit theaters for another two years, which should allow for healing of the wounds of Malaysian Airlines MH370. It’s unclear what other obvious Illuminati conspiracy Grierson will have helped to orchestrate by then.