Did “Zero Dark Thirty” Use 9/11 Victim’s Voicemail without Permission?
(NEW YORK) — The mother of a 24-year-old man who lost his life during the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center towers on 9/11 is upset that a voicemail message he left on his family’s answering machine on that day was incorporated into the Oscar-nominated film Zero Dark Thirty.
Connecticut resident Mary Fetchet tells the New York Daily News that she was not asked by producers of the film for permission to use the recording left by her son Bradley Fetchet, who worked inside the South Tower.
Zero Dark Thirty begins with a montage of audio recordings of calls made by people inside the towers during the 9/11 attack. The Oscar best picture nominee dramatizes the hunt for Osama bin Laden.
Mary Fetchet tells the Daily News that in her son’s message, “You could tell that there was fear in his voice. He said he had just seen someone fall from the 90th floor in the other building and that he loves me.”
She says she learned from another family of a 9/11 victim that her son’s message was included in the montage.
Mary says, “[W]hen family members have to revisit this…to take his last words to me before he died, just, it’s counterproductive to one’s healing process. I don’t object to the film being made. But I do object to them taking the liberty of including my son’s last message to me.”
A rep for Zero Dark Thirty distributor Sony Pictures Entertainment says in a statement obtained by the Daily News that the filmmakers began contacting “a number of family members of the victims of the 9/11 attacks, including some whose voices can be heard on publicly released tapes,” before the movie was released.
In addition, a source tells the newspaper that a studio rep had informed Mary’s family about the use of Bradley Fetchet’s message in the movie. The source adds the recording was in the public domain.
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