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Greatly exaggerated
June 26, 2009 1:31 AM   Subscribe

With the world buzzing about celebrity deaths, it was an opportune moment for hoaxsters. A rumour that Jeff Goldblum had died spread quickly on Twitter, and "'Jeff Goldblum dead' was at 11am the third-most popular search term on Google". The actor's agent quashed the rumour, but not before Australian TV broadcast it as fact, complete with a touching montage tribute. Still, now he knows what it will be like when he really goes: "A surprise funeral? For me?"
posted by robcorr (78 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite

 
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posted by louche mustachio at 1:44 AM on June 26, 2009 [15 favorites]


Please delete this. Please delete the memory of the fake memories of the fake dead Jeff Goldblum.
posted by tepidmonkey at 1:48 AM on June 26, 2009 [2 favorites]


As an Aussie I hang my head in shame at Channel Nine broadcasting Goldblum's death as fact. Channel Seven broke MJ's death by one of their correspondents reading it off his Twitter feed.

This is news in Australia. Our Commercial stations are a joke. I just wish these pathetic and irrelevant dinosaurs would just die already.
posted by AzzaMcKazza at 1:49 AM on June 26, 2009 [7 favorites]


This is news in Australia. Our Commercial stations are a joke. I just wish these pathetic and irrelevant dinosaurs would just die already.

How is that different from news in the states?
posted by item at 1:52 AM on June 26, 2009 [1 favorite]


We have cameras.
posted by Christ, what an asshole at 1:55 AM on June 26, 2009 [9 favorites]


Please delete the memory of the fake memories of the fake dead Jeff Goldblum.

Never Always forget! Always Never remember!
posted by TwelveTwo at 1:56 AM on June 26, 2009 [5 favorites]


Nice title. Jeff Goldblum's joined the Mark Twain club, then.

Perhaps he should invest in one of these.
posted by justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow at 1:59 AM on June 26, 2009


"It's the stuff of good investigative journalism."

The Big Chill
posted by bwg at 2:01 AM on June 26, 2009 [2 favorites]


A great news story came out of this, with a headline that is almost always appropriate.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 2:02 AM on June 26, 2009


This is news in Australia.

See, the purpose of having a Metafilter is to filter stuff. I didn't hear anything about any of these people kicking (or not kicking) their buckets until I saw it here, and the Goldblum death (much as I might have secretly wished it were true) was (ah well) quickly debunked.

Use your Metafilters.
posted by pracowity at 2:04 AM on June 26, 2009 [3 favorites]


That's pretty lucky, he would have got barely any attention today of all days. Plus he's not dead.
posted by biffa at 2:04 AM on June 26, 2009 [1 favorite]


Take the twit out of twitter and you're left with ter and that doesn't make a goddamn lick of sense.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 2:05 AM on June 26, 2009 [2 favorites]


He is fine and in Los Angeles.

Can't be both. I call bullshit on the denial.

.
posted by Mikey-San at 2:07 AM on June 26, 2009 [18 favorites]


Wikipedia actually has a list of premature obituaries. Goldblum isn't on there yet.

Also not on the list: rock and roll, television, newspapers, money, and the internet.
posted by twoleftfeet at 2:08 AM on June 26, 2009


Someone tweeted this thread was deleted,
but it dates back in time to, oh, '99.
posted by zippy at 2:08 AM on June 26, 2009 [1 favorite]


There was also a phony rumor about Harrison Ford.
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 2:11 AM on June 26, 2009


I wonder how he feels about it all
posted by Acey at 2:15 AM on June 26, 2009


I wonder how he feels about it all
He's probably quite pleased about not being dead.
posted by chorltonmeateater at 2:26 AM on June 26, 2009 [4 favorites]


Don't forget rss. That's dead, too, although Mashable backtracked from that headline.
posted by crataegus at 3:02 AM on June 26, 2009


His cameo on the Colbert Report last week was pretty awesome.
posted by Mr. Palomar at 3:02 AM on June 26, 2009


This is news in Australia. Our Commercial stations are a joke. I just wish these pathetic and irrelevant dinosaurs would just die already.
Michael Jackson's death has been the lead story on every BBC radio 4 news bulletin, plus there was extensive coverage on their morning radio program. And BBC Radio 4 is 'serious' radio. So don't think it is just Australia.
posted by Megami at 3:03 AM on June 26, 2009


As an Aussie I hang my head in shame at Channel Nine broadcasting Goldblum's death as fact.
Just because an Australian does something stupid, it doesn't mean YOU have to hang your head in shame.
posted by bunglin jones at 3:16 AM on June 26, 2009


Just because an Australian does something stupid, it doesn't mean YOU have to hang your head in shame.

As an American, this thought is the only thing that lets me get out of bed in the morning.
posted by bgribble at 3:22 AM on June 26, 2009 [11 favorites]


Shit like this makes me wonder if it'll even be possible for Abe Vigoda to get proper obituaries if he ever does die.
posted by explosion at 3:30 AM on June 26, 2009 [2 favorites]


Dropping random references to living celebrities having died and watching people panic about it made World of Warcraft more fun yesterday.
posted by Pope Guilty at 3:48 AM on June 26, 2009 [1 favorite]


Sad news ... Jeff Goldblum, dead at 54

I just heard some sad news on talk radio - action movie star Jeff Goldblum was found dead in his Los Angeles home this morning. There weren't any more details. I'm sure everyone in the Slashdot community will miss him - even if you didn't enjoy his work, there's no denying his contributions to popular culture. Truly an American icon
posted by crayz at 3:56 AM on June 26, 2009 [2 favorites]


Maybe they mean "Death Dwarves have been captured" and it's good news.
posted by Kid Charlemagne at 4:06 AM on June 26, 2009


Pope Guilty just brought up fond memories of World of Warcraft for me, and that's no easy feat.
posted by Stylus Happenstance at 4:06 AM on June 26, 2009


I kinda feel sorry for Farrah and her family and friends.

"Farah Fawcett has passed aw-"

"We interrupt this broadcast to bring to you news of Michael Jackson's death."

Queue 24 hours of Michael Jackson footage.

Farrah who?
posted by jamstigator at 4:20 AM on June 26, 2009 [7 favorites]


Also, the dichotomy between MJ and Farrah is kinda interesting to me. Farrah was a white woman who was portrayed as a simpleton bimbo in the first part of her career, before later displaying some really serious acting talent, and ultimately documenting her struggles with cancer, a powerful and brave thing to do, before dying with great dignity and grace. And then there's the black man, who was a virtual superstar at age 5, hit his peak at around age 25, then spent the rest of his life devolving, dying a rather sad death. The arcs of their lives are almost an exact inverse when you think about it, and yet they ended up in the same place within hours of each other.
posted by jamstigator at 4:27 AM on June 26, 2009 [12 favorites]


I assumed the news was fake when I saw it on Twitter. So I tweeted that Glenn Beck and Sergeant Slaughter died in a motorcycle accident.
posted by munchingzombie at 4:27 AM on June 26, 2009 [3 favorites]


I kinda feel sorry for Farrah and her family and friends.

Just the opposite. Jackson's timely demise means that the legions of vulture-media scumbags that would otherwise have descended and smeared the mourners with their slime, well, they'll be otherwise engaged. If I were friend-or-family of Farrah, I'd be relieved.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 4:31 AM on June 26, 2009 [8 favorites]


I guarantee this shit was started by Goldblum himself while on a bender.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 4:50 AM on June 26, 2009 [4 favorites]


Also, the dichotomy between MJ and Farrah is kinda interesting to me.

I am interested in the similarities between Farrah and Groucho Marx.

Both reached the zenith of the popularity while working as part of a trio. Both were overshadowed in death by music royaly (Jackson and Elvis). Both wore make-up.
posted by Joey Michaels at 4:59 AM on June 26, 2009 [11 favorites]


I kinda feel sorry for Farrah and her family and friends.

It ain't the first time -- remember how Mother Theresa died a few hours before Princess Di did?
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 4:59 AM on June 26, 2009 [1 favorite]


A touching montage tribute, good grief. Would it be too much to ask that Richard Wilkins be fired for this? or for GTV 9 to be swallowed whole by the Earth, never to be seen or heard from again?
posted by nudar at 5:10 AM on June 26, 2009 [2 favorites]


MJ took the media slime bullet for Farah. It was his final act of courage. Thanks, Michael.
posted by orme at 5:18 AM on June 26, 2009


touching montage
I like how it shows him adjusting himself. That's classy, Ch 9.
posted by b33j at 5:22 AM on June 26, 2009


Would it be too much to ask that Richard Wilkins be fired for this? or for GTV 9 to be swallowed whole by the Earth, never to be seen or heard from again?

I grew up in Australia and lived through the rise of Richard Wilkins in the 80s with the launch of MTV in Oz, his ensuing ubiquity as a lightweight music commentator and pop culture expert. I've left those shores, but on occasional trips back and in threads like this, I encounter Wilkins again. I see him after 20 years, with the same boofy haircut, the same earnest but non-threatening manner, the same credulous reporting of minor pop culture divertimenti as earth-shattering truths.

It's strange. It's like coming out your front door and encountering a Diplodocus camped on your lawn, bathing lethargically in the fish pond, chewing slowly on the grass. Your first thought is "Wow, you're still around!" And your second is, "Shouldn't you be dead?"
posted by outlier at 5:32 AM on June 26, 2009 [8 favorites]


As an Aussie I hang my head in shame at Channel Nine broadcasting Goldblum's death as fact. Channel Seven broke MJ's death by one of their correspondents reading it off his Twitter feed.


What the fuck are you talking about. It was Richard Wilkins for fuck sake. Like Australian commercial TV has dibbs on stupid?
posted by mattoxic at 5:40 AM on June 26, 2009


As a dumbass I hang my head in shame for completely swallowing the "Goldblum dead" hoax. *sigh*
posted by Neofelis at 5:48 AM on June 26, 2009


Goldblum deserves a better obit post than this.
posted by mazola at 6:14 AM on June 26, 2009 [4 favorites]


Don't believe any story about Jeff Goldblum's death that doesn't begin with a butterfly flapping its wings.
posted by unsupervised at 6:35 AM on June 26, 2009


Also, the original news story was dated 26/06/2009.

THE DAY'S NOT OVER YET JEFF GOLDBLUM!
posted by mazola at 6:35 AM on June 26, 2009 [1 favorite]


Play it off, keyboard cat!
posted by phaedon at 6:37 AM on June 26, 2009 [3 favorites]


His agent clarified, "Jeff Goldblum's NOT DEAD. Only his career is. Call me. "
posted by mazola at 6:42 AM on June 26, 2009


I hang my head in shame as a matter of course.
posted by xod at 6:44 AM on June 26, 2009


This post may be a little premature. It's never entirely clear whether Jeff Goldblum is dead or not. Sometimes he dies for hours at a time before reviving. Sometimes as long as a month. The entire time he was filming Powder, he was dead.

Maybe we should wait until we're sure he's not dead before putting up a post like this.
posted by Astro Zombie at 6:46 AM on June 26, 2009 [1 favorite]


There was also a phony rumor about Harrison Ford.

I wonder if there's a phenomenon where the announcement of major celebrity deaths encourages copycat hoaxes. I seem to remember rumors about Scott Baio being dead when Chris Farley died, so it does seem to be a pattern.
posted by jonp72 at 7:10 AM on June 26, 2009


This post may be a little premature. It's never entirely clear whether Jeff Goldblum is dead or not.

You mean, he's like Schrodinger's cat?
posted by jonp72 at 7:11 AM on June 26, 2009


RIP Carrot-top.
posted by Mister_A at 7:13 AM on June 26, 2009


From the first moments of Earth Girls Are Easy, I knew that Goldblum was destined to go down as a Hollywood legend. Sad day for all of us.
posted by Pollomacho at 7:14 AM on June 26, 2009


If I recall correctly, rock critic Dave Marsh said he demanded proof when told Keith Moon was dead but when he heard about Elvis, he knew right away it was true.

So far, this is the only thing about Michael Jackson's death that hasn't been like Elvis's death for me.
posted by Joe Beese at 7:36 AM on June 26, 2009


Jeez, they're dropping like flies.





What, too soon?
posted by zarq at 7:54 AM on June 26, 2009 [3 favorites]


For about 20 minutes yesterday Michael Jackson was dead according to TMZ and Twitter. And nowhere else. CNN, NBC, LA Times, everyone else was waiting to confirm the story. And a bunch of nitwits on Twitter were breathlessly sharing the rumour as if it were already true. Heck, I even saw someone say "it's true MJ is dead; I confirmed it on Wikipedia". Yes, it turned out to be true. But it doesn't matter what you know, it's how you know what you know.

BTW, Harrison Ford was dead yesterday, too.
posted by Nelson at 7:55 AM on June 26, 2009


His cameo on the Colbert Report last week was pretty awesome.

I believe he was also on CR again this week. Colbert said "what are you still doing here?" I figured that he probably didn't go straight from the CR set to NZ (consider the travel time from NYC to Auckland, plus travel time to the set), so it seemed highly suspicious.
posted by SirOmega at 8:00 AM on June 26, 2009


Jeff Goldblum is dead to me.
posted by mazola at 8:02 AM on June 26, 2009


Here's the thing, ah, ah, ah, you know, because it's funny -- people thought I was dead, but, ah, I wasn't. So there's that. So, you know, CRAZY, yes?

Man, it's hard to represent the way Jeff Golblum speaks in print.
posted by Astro Zombie at 8:07 AM on June 26, 2009 [2 favorites]


Protip for journalists: If the website reporting Jeff Goldblum's death can be modified to report Hanna Montana's death by changing the URL, it's probably fake.
posted by voltairemodern at 8:08 AM on June 26, 2009


And nowhere else.

You obviously missed the multiple "LE ROI DU POP EST MORT!" posts that popped up repeatedly here prior to this one. And after<>.

MeTa.


posted by zarq at 8:10 AM on June 26, 2009


Overwhelmed by grief and camp, our heroine retreats to her boudoir...

In re: Abe Vigoda...

In an early-morning FaceBook rant, I dared the Gods to take from me any number of other childhood heroes in the next 72 hours--the genius reasoning behind this being that I'm not officially middle-aged until a certain minimum threshold of childhood celebrity star body count is attained. My similarly-aged friends got in on the list, and one mentioned Abe Vigoda. I wikipe'd him, just cuz I thought he was already dead, and--I swear--the entry said he died yesterday after falling in his NYC home upon hearing that Michael Jackson died.

Not being able to substantiate the story elsewhere, I directed my FB crowd to it, but now Abe's entry discusses the 1982 False Report of His Death. But this morning's false report was MUCH funnier!!
posted by njbradburn at 8:28 AM on June 26, 2009


You mean, he's like Schrodinger's cat?

Sometimes. Maybe. It's complicated.
posted by vibrotronica at 8:54 AM on June 26, 2009


I didn't believe it when I heard Jeff Goldblum was dead - too many celebs for one day - the quota had been met.
posted by garnetgirl at 9:01 AM on June 26, 2009


He's not dead, just drunk.
posted by educatedslacker at 9:25 AM on June 26, 2009


New Jersey: Why is there a watermelon there?
Reno: I'll tell you later.


My theory is that he won't die till he gets an answer.
posted by quin at 10:00 AM on June 26, 2009 [2 favorites]


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posted by waraw at 10:49 AM on June 26, 2009


His agent clarified, "Jeff Goldblum's NOT DEAD. Only his career is. Call me. "

You know, it's funny: Law & Order: Criminal Intent was, in all previous incarnations, entirely awful. Now, with Goldblum in the starring role, I daresay it's an instant classic in the vein of Columbo and Murder She Wrote. Seriously. Dude owns that shit.
posted by Sys Rq at 11:17 AM on June 26, 2009


You know, it's funny: Law & Order: Criminal Intent was, in all previous incarnations, entirely awful.

This is not true.
posted by Iridic at 11:22 AM on June 26, 2009


Well, okay, mostly awful.
posted by Sys Rq at 11:26 AM on June 26, 2009


I knew Jeff Goldblum hadn't fallen off a cliff and died. I would have caught him.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 11:32 AM on June 26, 2009 [1 favorite]


RIP Carrot-top.

Wishing does not make it so.

As for Jeff Goldblum, he's NOT dead, that's his acting style. He made Ben Vereen look good in "Tenspeed and Brownshoe", for goodness sake!

Reading about "The CNN.com Incident" (in which the website accidentally 'went live' with obits for Fidel Castro, Dick Cheney, Nelson Mandela, Bob Hope, Gerald Ford, Pope John Paul II, and Ronald Reagan, mostly with details copied from other obits) helps explain why CNN was last to confirm Michael Jackson's death. Overcompensation is so very CNN.

And Harrison Ford is not on the Wikipedia page of "Premature Obituaries". So he must really be dead!!!
posted by wendell at 11:41 AM on June 26, 2009


"It ain't the first time -- remember how Mother Theresa died a few hours before Princess Di did?"

Uhm, Mother Theresa died six days after Princess Dianna (September 5th and August 31st 1997 respectively).
posted by Mitheral at 11:55 AM on June 26, 2009


THE DAY'S NOT OVER YET JEFF GOLDBLUM!

Yes. Nature finds a way.
posted by Beardman at 11:59 AM on June 26, 2009 [1 favorite]


Pictures for Sad Children author John Campbell has an informative take on how the media handles celebrity deaths.
posted by ...possums at 1:23 PM on June 26, 2009 [1 favorite]


Today we were talking about Michael Jackson at work, and someone mentioned that Billy Ocean's "Caribbean Queen" is a total ripoff of "Billie Jean" among other Michael Jackson songs. It even has a creepy Vincent-Price-style laugh. But most importantly, it has a wolf whistle sound that's very much like (if not exactly like) the one in Tim and Eric's "Jeff Goldbluman Group" dance video. the circle is complete.
posted by Stylus Happenstance at 1:33 PM on June 26, 2009


Reading the dead people having sex post yesterday, I just assumed both Harrison Ford and Calista Flockhart had died sometime ago.
posted by xod at 1:47 PM on June 26, 2009


Alan Carr reported this on his Twitter and I yelled at him, and now I feel terrible. He followed up with 'Last week they said i'd died - I took it with a pinch of salt'. I'm sorry for yelling, Alan!
posted by Mael Oui at 7:51 PM on June 26, 2009


Sorry Jeff, only your career died.
posted by dasheekeejones at 6:52 AM on June 29, 2009


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