The anonymity afforded by the internet has mostly been a disastrous pox on our civilization, emboldening people to scream their opinions into the dark ether of the internet with spittle flying and no fear of consequences.
Occasionally, though, secrecy offers one the ability to divulge deep, dark, weird, or just downright hilarious stories without fear of judgment or retribution. Whisper, founded in 2012 by Michael Heyward, is an app that does just this, offering a completely anonymous platform to vent, enlighten, and tantalize. No profile required, no username; just the truth, random backgrounds, and the ability for others to reply with their own secrets just as anonymously.
The stories don't come stranger or more titillating than those confessed from movie sets. Hollywood is an industry lousy with non-disclosure agreements and litigation, where one wrong word to the wrong person can mean the end of a career or a project canceled.
Whisper offers a safe venting space for the harried and underpaid crews and casts of Hollywood to fill us in on what's really going on behind the scenes, and some bystanders who get caught up in the filming can have a say too.
Here are the 15 Dark Whisper Confessions From Movie Sets.
17 Being drunk on set
It’s one thing to come to work hungover, still suffering like a puffy-faced zombie from a hard night of drinking and revelry. However, it takes a lot more confidence to come to work drunk, especially if you’re an actress.
Think about it: acting involves controlling your face, your posture, as well as your voice to display the proper emotion required for a scene, all while having to adjust it on the fly to suit the needs of the production. Now imagine having to balance all those spinning plates while totally hammered.
The only explanation is that she’s some kind of acting Drunken Master. Like the Jackie Chan of Juliard, perhaps she can only call upon her full thespian powers while totally blitzed, while the cast and crew are left none the wiser about her inebriated state.
Or, more likely, everyone knew she was drunk and was just being polite.
16 Cops arriving during a shoot
This should have ended in tragedy. At least they were using airsoft guns as opposed to blank-firing prop guns. Airsoft guns use springs or gas canisters to shoot tiny non-lethal pellets, whereas prop guns are typically loaded with real cartridges filled with gunpowder.
While they don't actually fire bullets, they do look, sound, and feel like real firearms, even ejecting spent shells. However, a cop arriving at a scene with people brandishing realistic weapons might not have clocked that slight difference.
Indeed, the confession seems to imply that the cops were called to the set rather than just stumbling upon it. As if someone saw a bunch of people with guns in front of a camera and decided it was probably a bunch of maniacs ready to murder people instead of people filming. Though perhaps this is not outside the realm of possibility.
15 As long as you have a camera no one will question you
This is a classic permutation of a maneuver referred to by the website TV Tropes as the "Clipboard of Authority". The site quotes Burn Notice: "in the workplace, a clipboard is as good as a skeleton key."
Essentially, by holding something official-looking and acting like you’re supposed to be there, people will think you actually have permission to be where you are. It's a classic spy movie tactic, but it works in real life as well.
Cameras prey on people's narcissism, so it enables you to get places that would be otherwise inaccessible.
Just look at the true story behind the movie Argo-- a CIA exfiltration expert establishes a fake film production with the help of Hollywood to get American citizens out of a newly-hostile Iran.
There's also the more recent case where undercover FBI agents posed as a documentary crew in an attempt to get incriminating information out of the son of Cliven Bundy, leader of the infamous 2014 Bundy Ranch standoff.
14 A craft services person got a role in 500 MPH Storm
There are tons of times when a crew member has subbed in for an actor, or been invited to film a cameo as a fun nod to their role in the production. Most times, that’s the case for all crew cameos: they’re either merit-based or just a fun thank you. However, this was not one of those times when 500 MPH Storm decided to cast someone completely out of the ordinary.
500 MPH Storm, which stars Casper Van Dien, came out in 2013 and was directed by Daniel Lusko. Surprisingly, the movie pulled from craft services in order to fill a role. For those who don’t work in Hollywood, the only thing craft services crafts is food, so this was a particularly odd choice to make.
Craft service persons are the caterers, and thus have no experience actually acting. You could trip over eager, struggling actors just walking down any street in Hollywood. However, 500MPHS decided to give a free role to one of the people who makes the crew's pasta.
13 Spontaneous hook ups with the crew
Film sets can be extremely stressful for actors, crew, and extras alike, and being in such close proximity with a bunch of other stressed-out people, it's only natural that some would take the opportunity to de-stress.
However, most of the time on film sets it's hard enough to grab a spare second for a smoke or a snack, much less enough to hook up with three different crew members. Sure, there's union-mandated meal breaks every six hours, but when during those usually the last thing crew members want to do is skip out on hard-earned craft services.
Thus, hooking up with three crew members is quite unusual for the film industry, especially since film sets tend to be dirty, sweaty, exhausting environments where getting naked and up in another person's business is the last thing on your mind (unless you're the actors, and it's a sex scene).
12 Doing intimate scenes when you have a significant other
Whoever wrote this got themselves into deep water right off the bat when they heard “surreal POV orgy scene” and said, “say no more, who do I lie under?”
Now, they’ve most certainly crossed the line. So, if they decide not to tell their girlfriend, there’s always the chance that she could see the credit on IMDb, watch the movie, and instantly recognize that she was lied to, even if by omission. Unfortunately, telling the truth will probably not improve the situation, but it's the right thing to do.
If his girlfriend is familiar with the film industry, at least she'll probably appreciate that actors and crew members are frequently put in situations where they have to remain detached and professional in sexually- and emotionally-charged situations. All of this could have been avoided, though, if the writer of this confession had just talked it over beforehand.
11 Profane photobombing in the background of a film shoot
This is more the fault of everyone else on set than it is the fault of the writer of this confession. First of all, there should have been a continuity supervisor on set, whose job is to make sure that nothing anomalous is in the background so that shots can be cut together in post-production by the editor.
Barring that, the camera operators, production assistants, and anybody who was watching the playback from these shots should have clocked that somebody was giving the middle finger right to the camera.
Eventually, the editor should have finally realized that someone was flipping off the camera when he was putting the final cut of the film together, but apparently, this went completely undetected.
As a result of combined negligence, the author of this Whisper joins the hallowed pantheon of people filmed doing super-sketchy things in the backgrounds of movie scenes-- such as Doc Brown’s weird son in Back to the Future III making suggestive movements.
9 Having a goofy facial expression during a scene
For readers outside of Britain, Junior Doctors: Your Life In Their Hands is a show on BBC3 narrated by Merlin's Jason Done. It follows newly-minted UK doctors doing their first real stints in hospitals. The series has also spun off into Junior Paramedics.
However, sadly no amount of BBC prestige filmmaking or dramatic British voiceover can make up for a camera crew capturing you making a goofy face which will soon be seen by millions of viewers.
Unfortunately for this Whisper poster, Junior Doctors' ratings have been quite good, so there's a good chance that they've been seen by a sizable portion of UK television viewers.
At least whatever doctor in training posted this can take comfort in earning roughly $50,000 a year, according to NHS statistics.
7 The unfortunate reality of being a woman in the entertainment industry
It should be shocking that the author of this confession was sidelined by the men on the crew-- that she was left twiddling her thumbs on a production she was supposed to be a part of simply because of her gender. She's also consistently being refused jobs on set to the point where it seems that she can't even be said to be working on the film.
It is shocking if you aren't familiar with Hollywood or the film industry in general: women represent only 20% of executives who actually make the decision on which movies are made, and the pay gap even between male and female producers and directors is between 20% and 30%.
One hopes that, given the tremendous success of Wonder Woman, studios will finally start trusting women creators with big projects, if only to avoid the folly of Warner Bros.
6 No drugs for a documentary on ODs
It’s shocking enough if you live in an area that’s so badly riddled with drugs and addiction that it attracts film crews to document it. Granted, it could be worse if the area were getting a flood of overdoses every single night of the week, so perhaps they at least have that going for them.
The next sentence of the Whisper confessions seems pretty innocuous at first glance-- it’s like a drug-related corollary to Murphy’s Law. Of course, on the weekend a film crew arrives specifically to document your area’s crippling drug problem, there won’t be as many overdoses as normal, or there may not be as many reported specifically because patients want to avoid the prying eyes of a film crew. What really turns the sentence slightly disturbing is the frowning face.
The author could have left that sentence totally neutral. A mere impartial observation on the ironies of the universe. Instead, that frowny face turns it into an expression of disappointment. Now that sentence’s sentiment becomes, “Aw man, we barely had any people lethally overdosing this weekend-- what a bummer.”
5 Soap opera-style drama invades real life
This confession seems to have more of the makings of a soap opera plot line, except the intention of the person who posted this seems totally innocent. For once on this list, there doesn't seem to be any ambiguity as to the motivations of any person but the jealous aunt.
Your niece extends a friendly invitation to someone else working in the area, who knows full well that they're taken, to get some food. Depending on how good or bad the catering on set was, she may have been the hero he needed.
On a film set, craft services aren't always reliable, and people might risk judgment from their significant other for some genuine local cuisine. Alas, jealousy apparently won out over the better angels of the aunt's nature.
4 Smoking a joint in a local park with a film crew around
There are only eight states in the US which have fully legalized buying and consuming marijuana for recreational use-- Washington, Oregon, California, Nevada, Alaska, Colorado, Maine, and Massachusetts. Given that a movie is filming in the Whisper writer's local park, there's a high chance that they live in California, and probably Los Angeles County.
If the writer of this confession doesn't live in the aforementioned eight states, and doesn't have access to medical marijuana, they may be in serious trouble. Under federal law, marijuana is treated the same as other controlled substances, such as cocaine and heroin.
This is despite the fact that the Drug Enforcement Administration admits no deaths have ever been reported from an overdose of marijuana, and it has numerous health benefits, including relieving chronic pain.
3 Crew members who are afraid of Disney Movies
We have some doubts that the author of this confession is a camera man, considering the fact that he admits to closing his eyes during shoots. That’s pretty much the opposite of a camera operator’s job requirements, as they must be focused at all time.
Also, while Disney has done some pretty disturbing films in the past, they never typically create horror movies. Maybe “scary movies” are just movies that the author finds scary, depending on their individual fears.
Or, maybe the author of this confession is referring to scary movies made through one of the many subsidiary production companies that Disney owns. In any case, it’s highly suspicious.
2 Friends in need... help each other out?
It's very rare that a crew gets a spare moment on a film shoot, although we don't know too much about the recipient mentioned in this confession. Specifically, it doesn't say what his job was on set. He could be the director, or he could be a lowly production assistant.
However, one thing that begs to be clarified about this confession is who initiated it. If the author of this post is the one who first suggested it, then that's much less creepy, and maybe even hilarious. Imagine him or her talking with their friend, in between takes. Their friend is anxious, and their response was apparently some variation of, "know what might help?"
However, if the friend was the one who said, "Man, am I stressed. You know what would reeeeeally help me out?" that's a different matter. Even if they were very, very good friends that's more "creepy casting couch" than "heroic friend saves the film."
1 Letting your boss film you doing things
This one gets points for an on-porn-set confession that actually sounds like a separate porn scenario, because there's no way someone's boss just stumbles onto a porn set, unless they're in the porn industry.
If his boss did stumble on him shooting porn, the poster of this confession was either filming porn at work and the boss decided to take advantage of the situation or he purposefully let the boss know that he was shooting porn.
That would actually make a ton of sense, considering the author of this Whisper let his boss film him in a porn scenario. According to Rule 34 of the internet, there might be a "boss discovers me filming porn" genre of porn, and if there is, this poster is doing a fantastic job of advertising it.
Do you know of any other dark confessions surrounding movie sets? Let us know in the comment section.