World: There Are So Many Ted Bundy Movies That Two Ted Bundy Movie Directors Are Feuding Now

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Theodore Robert Bundy (born Cowell; November 24, 1946 – January 24, 1989) was an American serial killer who kidnapped, raped

Two new Ted Bundy movies are set to be released next month. Despite the backlash, Hollywood is certainly obsessed with the famous 1970s serial killer. With the upcoming releases of the Ted Bundy -centered films No Man of God and Ted Bundy : American Boogeyman, the internet is ablaze with backlash–but here's why Hollywood is so obsessed with churning out movies about the infamous serial killer. Society's fascination with murder and the dark psychology of those who perpetrate it is nothing new.

Given that there are already several Ted Bundy films floating around in the world (including two released last year) and that all of us have a finite amount of time on this planet, it seems fair to ask why we needed another.

Amber Sealey, Joe Berlinger are posing for a picture: Getty © Provided by The Daily Beast Getty

But when asked that very question during a Refinery29 interview, Amber Sealey—whose Bundy-centric film No Man of God premiered at Tribeca Film Festival on Friday—said that previous projects have missed the mark.

“They always glorify him,” she said. “They make him out to be a male model—so smart, so charismatic, a master of disguise. I don’t see that. When I look at him and I watch interviews and I listen to the tapes, I see a deeply insecure, needy—almost like an incel—kind of guy who just wants accolades and wants people to tell him how great he is.”

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Given that there are already several Ted Bundy films floating around in the world (including two released last year) and that all of us have a finite amount of time on this planet, it seems fair to ask why we needed another. During the interview, Sealey did not mention Joe Berlinger, the director whose Netflix documentary Conversations With a Killer: The Ted Bundy Tapes and Zac Efron-fronted Netflix movie , Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile, both received criticism for this very problem when they debuted in 2019.

Berlinger, director of two Bundy films, sent Sealey an irate email ahead of the Tribeca Film Festival premiere of her own spin on the serial killer, "No Man of God." In Sealey’s version, Luke Kirby plays Bundy opposite Elijah Wood as FBI analyst Bill Hagmaier. “Forgive the unsolicited advice, but after reading some of your interviews about your Bundy movie , I feel compelled to tell you that tearing down my work to promote yours is a slippery slope and intellectually dishonest and deeply offensive,” Berlinger wrote in an email shared by Sealey on Instagram.

During the interview, Sealey did not mention Joe Berlinger, the director whose Netflix documentary Conversations With a Killer: The Ted Bundy Tapes and Zac Efron-fronted Netflix movie, Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile, both received criticism for this very problem when they debuted in 2019.

In an email to Variety, Sealey claimed she has not name checked Berlinger or his films in any of her sit-downs with press. But evidently, he took her comments personally anyway—and sent her an angry email over it on the day of her premiere.

“Forgive the unsolicited advice,” Berlinger wrote in an email shared to Instagram by Sealey and obtained by Variety, “but after reading some of your interviews about your Bundy movie, I feel compelled to tell you that tearing down my work to promote yours is a slippery slope and intellectually dishonest and deeply offensive. How did my film glorify Bundy? Do you know anything about me and my 30 years focusing on criminal justice issues in my work, from wrongful conviction to victim advocacy?”

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Ted Bundy : American Boogeyman: Directed by Daniel Farrands. With Chad Michael Murray, Holland Roden, Jake Hays, Lin Shaye. When you have three people giving a film 10 /10 and an equal number giving it 1/10 then one must be a tad suspicious. This movie is a cynical attempt to make a cheap horror film using a well known story to try and drive up interest. This was so bad that i was compelled to come home and sign up for an IMDb user account so I could write a review to warn others.

The Ted Bundy Tapes and Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile examine the subject’s life and crimes, and how he used charm to manipulate his victims. And while the fundamental stories are the same, there are some differences. Because The Ted Bundy Tapes extensively documents Ted Bundy 's initial murders, the sequences that cover his two escapes show just how much the world has changed since then, especially in terms of mass media and institutional security. In June 1977, Bundy was well-known by authorities in Colorado, and he represented himself after being charged with murder.

The two-time Emmy winner went on to air out his grievances with the reviews his own work received. “There was a lot of hypocrisy in the reviews of my two projects,” he insisted.

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Sealey, Berlinger added, is “intellectually dishonest” for daring to criticize his work—which, again, she claims she never specifically criticized.

“The idea that you’re a woman doing this and that a woman should direct a film about this subject is spot on and a great talking point,” Berlinger magnanimously granted, “—but to take it a step further and tear down your predecessors, particularly when my doc series was the #1 unscripted show on Netflix in 2019 and my Efron movie was the #4 program of all programming on Netflix in 2019—are you saying that the same audience you are courting is so tasteless that they all loved a film that glorified a vicious serial killer?”

In case those credentials weren’t enough, Berlinger made sure to remind Sealey that his work has also “gotten wrongfully convicted people out of prison; has changed laws and racially biased polities in prison; has led to the recognition by the U.S. Congress for the Armenian genocide, among other social justice endeavors.”

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Ted Bundy - sarjamurhaaja: Directed by Matthew Bright. With Michael Reilly Burke, Boti Bliss, Julianna McCarthy, Jennifer Tisdale. The story of serial killer Ted Bundy . There are so many debates going on here. Debates without a full stop. The problem with stealing sex and power from a human being is that it is messy. Killing can be only part of the cleaning up process or a device to extend the pleasure.

Somehow, however, Berlinger saved his richest comment until the end: “perhaps as a woman,” he wrote, “you will avoid some of the vitriol I received from some corners who seemed to have a pre-meditated agenda to criticize—but I predict you will probably see a bunch of reviews that misunderstand your work and accuse you of what you now accuse me of in your self-promotion, so perhaps you will later have more empathy for what I’m saying here. Good luck with your premiere.”

In her email to Variety, Sealey said Berlinger’s name came up once during a podcast interview she doesn’t think he’s heard, but that she never said anything about his films during press sit-downs. “There have been 20 films made about Bundy,” she wrote, “and it was surprising to me that he took my comments so personally.”

“It also felt like he was saying if my film was to be positively reviewed that would only be because I am a woman and could avoid, in his words, the ‘vitriol’ that his movie got in his reviews,” Sealey added.

In a statement to IndieWire, Berlinger said he’d expressed his feelings to Sealey “in a thoughtful manner.”

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“Promoting her film about the rape and murder of women by tearing down my film that was designed to be a victim-focused film about the psychology of betrayal and deception, made with the full support of victim Liz Kendall, played by Lily Collins, and was supported by other victims of Bundy’s crimes felt intellectually dishonest,” he wrote in part. “...Her publication of that private email is as self-promotional as her comments about my film... Remember, she made it public, not me. Mine was a private email.”

In a follow-up statement to IndieWire, Berlinger clarified that in listing his many credentials, he was not “patting myself on the back. The point I was making is that in my three decades of nonfiction criminal justice filmmaking, I have spent considerable time with real victims and their families advocating both personally and filmically for them... victims are always front and center in all of the work that I have done in this space.”

Berlinger also told Variety that it seems “disingenuous” for Sealey to claim her comments during the Refinery29 interview and elsewhere are not about his work.

“I am not sure how an email letting her know that her words were hurtful to me is an attempt to silence her… what control do I have over another filmmaker?” he added. “As to the veiled references to misogyny, I will let my record of those who know and work with me, from to the number of women I have personally helped get into the DGA to the number of women show runners I hire, to speak for itself.”

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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