Despite the fact that Pooh Bear himself would disapprove of their shameful tactics, those who passionately hate the idea of a honey bear wielding a knife have resorted to death threats. Speaking with Agence France-Press, director Rhys Frake-Waterfield called the vitriolic response to the movie “mental.”
“I’ve had petitions to stop it. I’ve had death threats. I’ve had people saying they called the police,” he told AFP. Oh to be a fly on the wall for that ridiculous 9-1-1 conversation. Clearly lacking a sense of humor, way too many people fail to realize that one slasher won’t tarnish Pooh’s good-natured legacy. For his part, Frake-Waterfiled has been embracing the negativity since the very start. When a commenter complained that the movie would ruin people’s childhoods, the filmmaker agreed, writing on his Instagram story: “That’s what I’m trying to do, ruin everyone’s childhood.”
For years, the adventures of Pooh and co were exclusively licensed to Walt Disney Studios, which produced six feature films, numerous shorts, direct-to-video specials and so much more. In Disney’s hands, the silly old bear was like the manifestation of childhood innocence, delivering wise-yet-simple advice to the masses while appealing most directly to a preschool audience. But those days are (mostly) over, because the copyright on the first A.A. Milne book recently expired. Face it — gritty reboots are all the rage nowadays. Not even preschool icons are safe! Frake-Waterfield was just the first to pounce on the opportunity, a move that is primed to pay off in spades.