Disney Issues Alert after Blogger Posts Concerns on Twitter
According to Variety Magazine, Disney issued an alert to moviegoers regarding Incredibles 2 having several scenes that may be harmful to people with photosensitivity. On Friday, Blogger Veronica Lewis posted tweets about these scenes, stating that the strobe light effects went on in several places and they were any where from 30 – 90 seconds each.
In her tweets, Veronica says that the movie is “filled with tons of strobe/flashing lights…”. She also points out that people with epilepsy, migraines and other chronic illnesses are effected by strobe lights. Before Disney released its official statement on Saturday, many theaters were posting warnings voluntarily after Veronica’s Tweets went viral.
So, do strobe lights trigger seizures and other medical issues? The answer is yes! In medical settings, strobe lights are used to trigger seizures and other neurological disorders so that electrical brain active can be measured while the patient is having an episode. (I have actually had this done and it was complete misery!)
In 1997, in Tokyo, over 700 people were rushed to hospitals after watching a “Pokeman” cartoon. A CNN article states that, “Most developed the symptoms about 20 minutes into the program after a scene depicting an exploding “vaccine bomb” set off to destroy a computer virus. It was followed by five seconds of flashing red light in the eyes of “Pikachu,” a rat-like creature that is the show’s most popular character. Some other children were stricken later, when watching excerpts from the scene in TV news reports on the earlier victims.”
According to Dr. Fergus Rugg-Gunn, with the Epilepsy Society, “Flashing lights have become very much part of our culture but if the lights are flashing at between 3 and 30 flashes per second, they could potentially cause a problem for someone who is photosensitive.”
I know that I will not be able to watch this movie because of these strobe light special effects. It is very important for parents and those that have illnesses that are triggered by photosensitivity be able to make informed decisions about these events during movies and television shows.