"Last Looks" Looks Like a Cannes Hoax that AP and Film Threat Fell For

Last LooksWe're not sure how you say bullshit in French, but there's a "controversial" film slated to screen at Cannes this week that should be called Red Flag.

American indie film Last Looks has supposedly been blocked from entering France because it allegedly contains scenes of real deaths that occurred during the production. AP jumped on the "controversy," and even Film Threat bit, but the whole thing walks, talks and smells like a big fat fake.

If we are to believe the Associate Press, the deaths in question supposedly occurred during the production of American indie horror pic The Evil Eye, which was supposedly filmed in the summer of 2006 on the Turkish and Greek Islands.

French actress Vérane Pick was supposedly killed during the filming of a stunt scene involving a prop knife that "tragically turned out to be a real weapon." Malaysian born actress Ying-Yu Tan supposedly died of "unnamed injuries." And finally, director Zack Freedman, cinematographer Scott Maher and soundman Ryan Denmark were supposedly killed when the boat they were shooting from "blew up during a staged explosion at sea." Either this is the world's unluckiest film production or this is the latest in a long history of entertainment industry publicity stunts.

After the "deaths" and after the crew of The Evil Eye supposedly fled Europe, 19-year-old videographer Nick Brown, son of British-born film editor Barry Alexander Brown, somehow got hold of all the footage and turned it into a film called Last Looks.

Family members of the deceased crew members have supposedly been protesting the film on the Web site http://www.horror-no.com. And they supposedly alerted French customs officials, who then supposedly blocked the film from entry into France, where it is slated to screen out of competition at the Cannes Film Market. Yeah, right. Then why is there no contact information on the web site? Why are there no names of the grieving family members? Why isn't there even an email address or a petition to sign or a link to the MPAA or some other industry group to help pressure the film to not get distributed?

Because the whole thing is fake.

- There haven't been any films called The Evil Eye since 1973.

- There's no trail of dead actresses and crewmembers. Their "deaths" were first reported by Dimokratiki, a paper that's conveniently printed only in Greek.

- "Actress" Vérane Pick's only IMDB credit is as a producer of the indie comedy Winning Girls Through Psychic Mind Control.

- Cinematographer Scott Maher, who's also supposed to be dead, seems to be earning a paycheck on a few films right now as an electrician, and oh yeah he worked on that classic film with Pick, Winning Girls Through Psychic Mind Control.

- "Soundman" Ryan Denmark also appears to be alive and well and working as an assistant editor on the TV show M.O.N.Y.

- The only Last Looks listed on IMDB is a 2004 drama about an aging actress who "returns to the theatre where she was once a star only to find time has taken its toll."

- The clip of "lost footage" on horror-no.com is 10 seconds of cheaply-filmed, looped footage that looks like it could've been shot in Marina Del Rey during someone's lunch break.

We have two, dueling theories here at LAist about Last Looks. Either the film doesn't exist at all and this is a prank to show how easily AP, Film Threat and other legitimate publications can be punk'd; or Last Looks is a low-budget indie film searching for a distributor, and the filmmakers wanted to drum up publicity before their screening at the Cannes Film Market.

We couldn't find a listing anywhere online for Cannes-related screenings of Last Looks, or any screenings for that matter, or of an official website or even a blog for the film, but if it is really showing in the Film Market, we predict that Nick Brown will somehow heroically manage to extricate his masterwork from customs just in time for the screening.

Props to the filmmakers of Last Looks for Blair Witch-ing their film and creating a publicity stunt of international proportions. And shame on AP for being so easily tricked by a bunch of bozos with ridiculous facts. How about a rudimentary cross-check of IMDB next time, fellas?

Either way, we bet the film is a stinker, if it even exists. A little hype is one thing, but real filmmakers don't have to muck up the process with BS to get people to watch their movies.