My wife and I were talking about all the high-profile celebrity deaths of late, when she mentioned one I somehow hadn't heard about: Jeff Goldblum. "I just saw Jeff Goldblum on the Colbert Report," I said. "What do you mean he's dead?"
"Someone at work told me," she said. "Google it." Turns out that "Jeff Goldblum dead" is the third most popular search on Google right now -- and it isn't true. Fans of the Tall Guy can breathe easy: he's just fine. But there's a death report floating around the internet, which reads thusly:
Actor Jeff Goldblum died while filming a movie in New Zealand early this morning - June 26, 2009. Preliminary reports from New Zealand Police officials indicate that the actor fell more than 60 feet to his death on the Kauri Cliffs while on-set. Specific details are not yet available. The accident occured at aproximatly 4:30 a.m. (UTC/GMT +12). Additional details and information will be forthcoming. New Zealand, in recent years has grown in populariaty as a backdrop for Hollywood producers because of it's scenic and rugged landscape. Recent movies filmed in New Zealand include The Lord Of the Rings, King Kong, and The Chronicles Of Narnia.
The spelling mistakes should've been a tip-off. The report was generated by FakeAWish.com, a celebrity death report generator in which you enter a celebrity's name and the way in which he or she has (supposedly) died, and you get a fake death report. For instance, here's a news report I created about Mr. Ed's death in a luxury yacht accident off St. Tropez.
There are other "fake news" sites, too. Here's a bit of breaking news about how Jason English is frightened of sheep. We're here for you, Jason. Also, did you hear that George Bush was arrested for indecent exposure?
Considering how easy these are to create and how ridiculous they are, I can't believe anyone fell for the Jeff Goldblum hoax. Are celebrity deaths suddenly catching, like swine flu? Let us know in the comments about any other celebrity death hoaxes you may have heard about.
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