Thanks to D-Throned on Twitter for letting me know that the additional footage is actually a viral video and part of the latest episode of E! Online’s TV series The Royals.
On Saturday evening I posted this debunk of a viral video that claimed to show a naked man escaping from Buckingham Palace. It was pretty comprehensive and garnered some attention – national and international media, social media and some conspiracy sites who became quite nasty when their thinking was challenged.
It always bothered me that I couldn’t find the footage that had been matted in to make it look real, but now I’ve confirmation of where the falling man was filmed and when. Before I parted company with the more conspiracy-minded website where I first saw the video, a poster on that site going by the name RollandSmoke suggested that the place where the matted in footage might have been filmed could be Moor Park Golf Club. Here’s a picture:Looks nice. Looks very nice. Also looks very much like the Palace, or rather the east facing front of the Palace that we’re all familiar with on the news. In fact it’s so much like the Palace that it’s been used in a number of film and TV productions apparently. So says the PA to the Chief Executive of the place. I emailed her last night to confirm whether or not Moor Park could be the place in the viral video and I got this reply (if you click it you’ll get the image full-sized):
I’ve pixellated the emails and phone numbers of individuals in the email for privacy reasons, as well as some of my own private details in Gmail but it’s pretty clear to see that Moor Park IS the place where the falling man was filmed before the footage was matted into the video. UPDATE(03/03/2015, 13.53): At the request of the company I’ve also pixellated their website and phone numbers.
So to clarify: the naked man at Buckingham Palace video IS a fake. It’s a combination of video footage taken at the actual Palace and video footage from a film shoot at Moor Park, the latter of which has probably been matted over in After Effects or some other FX program. It’s not that difficult to do, despite the seeming intricacy of it, if you know how; and there are plenty of people out there who will do. My company even managed to get a guy in New Zealand who’d worked on Avatar to work CG on our short film Some Riot in 2012 for free. We found him on Star Now!
It has been suggested that there been some nefarious reason behind this. But there’s no rational evidence for that that I’ve seen. I think – and this is just my opinion so take it or leave it – that it’s a film-maker with access to the footage creating a viral video; or a student film-maker testing his FX skills.
As in, it’s been done for a bit of a laugh.
I don’t normally do debunking to this degree. I love a rational and skeptical approach to things I engage with on-line and I love a debate on those terms . Thanks to those who have commented and those in the national and international media who spread the story.
Thanks also to a particular group of “conspiracists” who drove the traffic to my site. Much appreciated! I’m sorry to have highlighted your confirmation bias with the first post; and I’m sorry you’re no doubt suffering the most horrific cognitive dissonance faced with these facts. You’ll probably make up some story about Moor Park Golf Club being in on it and part of some Satanic Royal cult or something; or maybe even carry on your somewhat unhinged attack on me from yesterday. At least it’s keeping you busy and off the streets for a few days!
I might even dedicate a future blog post to how this developed from the “conspiracist” side of things. Interesting to see psychology – somewhat imbalanced, at that – at work.