Amanda Knox, activist, journalist and author of 'Waiting to Be Heard,' which retells the events of her charge of murder in Italy, her eventual acquittal and the fall out that followed, is not happy about an upcoming Matt Damon movie that is garnering much praise. She will not be the first in line to buy a ticket to watch Stillwater. Yesterday, she took to Twitter to call out Matt Damon and Tom McCarthy for stealing her story in in a series of tweets.
"Does my name belong to me? My face? What about my life? My story? Why does my name refer to events I had no hand in? I return to these questions because others continue to profit off my name, face, & story without my consent. Most recently, the film #STILLWATER."
She continues, "This new film by director Tom McCarthy, starring Matt Damon, is "loosely based" or "directly inspired by" the "Amanda Knox saga," as Vanity Fair put it in a for-profit article promoting a for-profit film, neither of which I am affiliated with."
Amanda Knox's story was followed by the world in 2007. She was an American college student who spent nearly four years in an Italian prison following her conviction for the 2007 murder of Meredith Kercher, a fellow exchange student who shared her apartment. Knox, after returning to her apartment with her boyfriend, Raffaele Sollecito, notified police when she got home that her roommate was dead. They were convicted of murder and sentenced to 25 and 26 years, respectively. With tireless help from her family and the US, she and her boyfriend were eventually acquitted.
Amanda Knox admits Stillwater isn't the first time where someone has chosen to "rip off my story without my consent at the expense of my reputation." Knox invited McCarthy and Damon to join her on her podcast, 'Labyrinths,' so that they could hear her side of the story and maybe hear their's. She wants people to better understand how, "by fictionalizing away my innocence, my total lack of involvement, by erasing the role of the authorities in my wrongful conviction, McCarthy reinforces an image of me as a guilty and untrustworthy person."
In fairness, McCarthy does reference Knox quite a few times speaking of his film. "There were so many characters around the case that I really followed pretty closely," McCarthy says. "But really the first thing that I took away from it was, what would that be like as an American student to go over (to Europe) for what should be one of the most exciting moments in a young-adult life and to find yourself in that tragedy? There were just so many layers to that story that kept anyone who was following pretty riveted.... Who are the people that are visiting (her), and what are those relationships? Like, what's the story around the story?"
We decided, 'Hey, let's leave the Amanda Knox case behind,'" says McCarthy. "But let me take this piece of the story, an American woman studying abroad involved in some kind of sensational crime and she ends up in jail, and fictionalize everything around it."
In Stillwater, college student Allison (Abigail Breslin) has been imprisoned for a violent crime in Marseille, France (not Itay) for five years and counting. And unlike Knox, who had the support of her while family, Allison must rely on her estranged father Bill Baker (Damon) a roughneck from Oklahoma for help. It should be noted that Amanda Knox's father was the face of the family, and the most vocal in the media. As of yet, no response has been reported from Damon or McCarthy.