Nostalgia can be a powerful thing, as an entire generation will come together to enjoy looking back fondly on the music, movies, and TV shows they consumed as kids. In fact, nostalgia can be so potent that sometimes we all remember something that never actually happened, like the thousands of millennials who reminisce about Sinbad’s genie movie that doesn’t exist.
According to the internet, there is a movie called Shazaam that stars the comedian as a genie who helps a pair of kids get through a difficult time. Except there isn’t. It seems most likely that people are thinking of Kazaam, 1996 family comedy where former NBA superstar Shaquille O’Neal played a genie. But according to Sinbad’s kids, people will continue to insist that Shazaam is real even when they are presented with the facts.
“[P]eople will be like, ‘Oh no, I’m not talking about Kazaam,'” Sinbad’s daughter Paige Bryan explained. “‘I’m talking about your dad’s [movie].'”
Being incorrectly corrected about your dad’s own filmography is a uniquely frustrating experience for Paige and her brother Royce, so much so that they are now trying to stop this bizarre misinformation campaign that has taken on a life of its own.
Sinbad himself has tweeted about this nonexistent movie he never starred in and he even once offered a $1,000 reward to anyone who could find a clip from Shazaam, knowing full well that it’s a prize that nobody will ever win.
The millennial love for Shazaam seems to be the latest example of the Mandela Effect, a cultural phenomenon where people will misremember something that happened in the past. It was named after the fact that tons of people believe Nelson Mandela died in prison in the 90s despite living until 2013 and one of the most famous pop culture is examples is people believing it was the Berenstein Bears instead of the Berenstain Bears.
Paige has a simple solution to anyone who might be struggling to accept that Shazaam isn’t real: “Get over it.” Fair enough!