Sharks are some of the most feared creatures on the planet. Up until Shark Week became a popular TV week, little to nothing was known about these fearsome predators of the sea. In 1975, Steve Spielberg took advantage of these mysterious creatures by adapting the book Jaws, into a movie. His movie became an instant classic and painted sharks to be gruesome man killers. As all of you probably know from seeing it, Jaws is a story about a man-killing shark that terrorizes the small island town of Amity Island (fictional town). What many people don’t know is what Jaws is based on. It is loosely based on the rogue shark, a shark that travels out of normal feeding patterns of sharks, that terrorized the New Jersey coast in the early 1900s. In the movie, several characters actually bring up this incident as a reference to what may have been going on at Amity Island.
At first, people reacted very frightened by this movie, and shark killings increased drastically after the movie was released. Not only this but beach attendance plummeted after the release of the movie because of widespread fear of Sharks. However, because of the fear that came after, many people started studying sharks and began understanding more about the kings of the sea.
Jaws has always been one of my favorite movies, mainly because I love sharks and have watched shark week religiously since I was 7 years old. I was first introduced to the movie by my mom when she was working at the production company she works at in NYC. It was one of my first experiences with the thriller genre and it struck fear and amazement into my eyes as to how powerful the sharks were. At first I was very scared of sharks, but that fear turned into respect the more I watched Shark Week and began to respect the creatures more. People have told me I am obsessed with sharks, and maybe I am. I love sharks and it is all due to Jaws.