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Industry Updates

Bad Guys in Movies Aren’t Allowed to use iPhones


For Apple, this best practice is all about image.

Rian Johnson, the director of Knives Out and The Last Jedi, recently revealed in an interview with Vanity Fair that Cupertino, Calif.-based Apple, the fourth-largest cell phone manufacturer in the world, doesn’t allow bad guys in the movies to use iPhones. Only the good guys can make calls and stare at their phones if they’re bored when they’re on-screen.

“Apple, they let you use iPhones in movies but — and this is very pivotal if you’re ever watching a mystery movie — bad guys cannot have iPhones on camera,” the director said in a video interview with Vanity Fair.

Apparently, Apple’s concern with how its products are portrayed in the movies and television shows dates back to 2002 and the TV show 24, which starred Kiefer Sutherland. According to an article in the technology magazine Wired, all the good guys in 24 used Macintosh computers and all the bad guys used Windows PCs.

MacRumors, a news website devoted to technology geeks, reports that “Apple is known for having strict rules about how devices are used, portrayed and photographed. As part of its guidelines for using Apple trademarks and copyrights, for example, Apple says that Apple products should only be shown ‘in the best light,’ in a manner or context that reflects favorably on the Apple products and on Apple Inc.”

Johnson admits he might have revealed the ultimate movie spoiler. “Oh no, every single filmmaker that has a bad guy in their movie that’s supposed to be a secret wants to murder me right now,” he joked.

Relax, Ryan: At least they won’t be allowed to track you down with the “Find My iPhone” app.