2014-08-21 18:56:02 - Days before premiere, video site claims popular trailer "violates YouTube's terms of service."
August 21 ( Hollywood) Days before the film's world premiere at the Action on Film Festival, YouTube has censored the controversial trailer for the dark nonfiction comedy High There, alleging violations of service terms.
High There recounts the adventures of directors Wayne Darwen and Henry Goren as they document and become immersed in the marijuana culture of Hawaii. The trailer contains nudity, drug references, cursing and allusions to the Drug Enforcement Administration's focus on marijuana users and prosecution of Hawaiian marijuana advocate Roger Christie.
"This film may be a comedy, but it exposes some serious truths," Darwen said this morning from Adelaide, Australia, where he's working on a new project. "Is this censorship? Is it a coincidence that our movie is focused
on Obama's home state? And who targeted us?"
YouTube's service terms cover sex and nudity, hate speech, "shocking and disgusting," dangerous illegal acts, children, copyright, privacy, harassment impersonation and threats. It did not indicate which of those terms the trailer violated.
"Maybe we hit four of those -- five if you count 'impersonation," Darwen speculated. "But it's said out front I'm playing Dave High. And there's nothing involving kids, hate speech, kids, harassment, or threats. Except for harassment and threats against us!"
The trailer received close to 20,000 views in the week it had been posted. An earlier YouTube preview of High There had generated one and a half million views before it was removed.
High There makes its world premiere Monday August 25th at the Action on Film International Film Festival in Monrovia, California.
Producers have reposted the trailer, "and are counting down the hours until it, too is removed," Darwen added.
High There, in which Darwen takes on the character of Dave High, is the latest transfornation for the celebrated television producer who began his career as a 17-year-old newspaper reporter in Sydney, Australia. Already known in media circles as the model for Robert Downey Jr.'s tabloid reporter in Oliver Stone's Natural Born Killers, Darwen's become a hero to marijuana advocates and hailed in some quarters as the successor to Hunter S. Thompson.
High There is directed by Darwen and Goren, written by Darwen, and produced by Darwen, Goren and Burt Kearns, the award-winning documentary film and television producer who immortalized Darwen as a tabloid television innovator in his book, Tabloid Baby.
The film is a Sam Peters International Productions Unlimited and Good Story Productions presentation of a Rat Lung picture.
High There is an official selection of the Action on Film International FIlm Festival. It will screen at 10 p.m. at the Krikorian Monrovia Cinema 12, along with the award winning short, The Low Road Baby. More film festival screenings will be announced in the near future.
Tickets: www.aoffest.com/#!product/prd12/2609055121/high-there-and-low-ro ..
New YouTube link: www.youtube.com/watch?v=qQhYSZyOwog&feature=youtu.be