Movies often portray apparently fantastic events like waterspouts depositing sharks in various cities or martial artists parrying bullets with their swords. As incredible and potentially implausible as they may sound, some of these events could actually happen. Even the seemingly most fantastic events are based on something real, at least to a degree. Some of Star Trek’s gadgets, for example, now exist in the real world; the smartphone is the spiritual descendant of the communicator. Similarly, we have technologies that respond to voice command, just like the officers and crew of the Enterprise. Here are some more examples of fantastic movie scenarios with real-world counterparts.
The Sharknado movies, made by SyFy, follow the adventures of a married couple who constantly find themselves battling the titular sharknados, which are tornados carrying man-eating sharks. In the first movie, for example, a waterspout scoops up the sharks and dumps them, plus a convenient amount of seawater, in Los Angeles. According to Dr. Marcus Daniels of Kennesaw State University in Georgia, a sharknado could happen, in the sense that a sufficiently strong storm could scoop up a shark and dump it on land. The shark, however, probably wouldn’t survive the experience and certainly wouldn’t attack anybody. In March 2017, Cyclone Debbie struck the Queensland, Australia, and deposited a dead bull shark near Ayr.