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Science Fiction

Sci-Fi admits lying about Shyamalan special. The network said it falsely claimed that its special on the ''Sixth Sense'' director was unauthorized

M. Night Shyamalan | CREATE A SCANDAL Shyamalan participated in the Sci-Fi flm
Image credit: M. Night Shyamalan: (George De Sota-Fashion Wire Daily/AP
CREATE A SCANDAL Shyamalan participated in the Sci-Fi flm

Turns out M. Night Shyamalan has no ''buried secret.'' The Sci-Fi Network has admitted that it lied when it claimed that the special it aired Sunday, ''The Buried Secret of M. Night Shyamalan,'' was an unauthorized, muckraking look at the ''Sixth Sense'' director. The claims were part of a guerrilla marketing campaign gone too far, according to published reports. The network had falsely claimed that Shyamalan had stopped cooperating with the documentary makers after questions got too personal, and that the special went on to discover dark secrets in his life.

''We created a fictional special that was part fact and part fiction, and Night was part of the creation from the beginning,'' Sci-Fi president Bonnie Hammer told USA Today. Among other fictions, the documentary falsely asserts that Shyamalan was deeply influenced by a child who drowned in a lake near his home when he was young. For his part, Shyamalan has said that he wasn't bothered by Sci-Fi's claims -- no doubt because the controversy helps draw attention to his upcoming new film, ''The Village.''

Originally posted Jul 19, 2004