CTS -Hoaxes

“I Must First Apologize” in Conversation with Joana Hadjithomas and Khalil Joregie


Joana Hadjithomas


Khalil Joregie

“But what does take place is a dramaturgy of various political and economic imaginaries whereby the history of the past few years of advanced communication is retold through semi-fictitious and highly personalized accounts of its conflicts, wars, uprisings, shifts in global economy, financial value fluctuations, raw materials, religious extremism, political changes and even ecological disaster.”

Orson Welles – War of the Worlds

Orson Welles

Orson Welles

Orson Welles helped performance one of the most infamous hoaxes of all time with his radio play of H.G.Wells’ The War of the Worlds. Although he wanted to perform it as if it was genuine and happening to give it an air of authenticity he reportedly did not believe anyone would be stupid enough to actually believe it.

Thousands of people believed it and panicked with public statements having to be issued to reassure people in America and around the world that aliens from Mars had not invaded Earth by landing in Woking.

“To become a hoax a lie must have something extra. It must be somehow outrageous, ingenious, dramatic or sensational. Most of all, it must command the attention of the public.” – Museum of Hoaxes 2013

F for Fake, Orson Welles 1973

Makes a fake documentary about real stories made out of lies. *blinks furiously*

Jackie Chan Death Hoax

There have been many occasions when Jackie Chan, an actor famed for performing all of his own stunts, has been falsely reported as having died on set or as a result of some illness. The fact he’s still alive and making movies might suggest these were false.


Argleton, Phantom Town in Lancashire

“I started to weave this amazing fantasy about the place, an alternative universe, a Narnia-like world. I was really fascinated by the appearance of a non-existent place that the internet had the power to make real and give a semi-existence” Roy Bayfield


The Hitler Diary Hoax

STERN magazine published what they claimed were Hitler’s diaries that detailed his thoughts during World War II, including Hitler’s moaning that Eva Braun told him that his breath smelled. However about a week after they published them they were declared fakes.


Clifford Irving – Howard Hughes

Clifford Irving was an author and perpetrator of hoaxes who wrote an autobiography of Howard Hughes, a reclusive entrepreneur, and was ultimately sentenced to about 2 and half years in jail for the identity fraud.


“My favorite moment is when he talks about Chartres, this extraordinary cathedral of Chartres which nobody knows who designed, how its authorship is anonymous and he connects that tot he whole idea of authorship and fakery.” Pete Bogdanovich


Dow Chemical Bhopal Disaster Hoax

The Yes Men Fix The World is a documentary about two men who posed as DOW PR people who got into an interview on the BBC to 300 million worldwide announcing that DOW accepted responsibility for the Bhopal disaster and had set up a $12 billion USD fund to be used for reparations for the victims affected by the disaster. Although the hoax was shortly discovered, DOW accepted responsibility not too long after.