Just two days ago I posted an article about Disney strong arming a fan made video away from its creator, and then turning around and profiting from the video they just claimed. Star Wars Fan Theory posted about how the film was seized. Last night SWFT posted the response from Warner Chappell, Disney’s music centered strong arm. His words say it best:
First off I can’t say hats off enough to SWFT. I would be absolutely livid, calling for heads at this point given the WC/Disney response. SWFT states multiple times that he does not want this to turn into a point of sourness or division. I cannot applaud him enough for that. The problem is this is an example of corporate strong arming greed that is first off BS and secondly everything George Lucas stood against in his film career.
SWFT describes what he went through to make the film legally and on the up and up. Of course he was told no to crowd funding and everything else. That has been a mainstay of Disney from the word go. No big deal.
It is Warner Chappell that comes back saying if you appeal this we are going to “own your ass into the ground.” What does that mean exactly? It means they seize the video 100%, and then they will proceed to shut down Star Wars Fan Theory and strip him of his YouTube channel.
Warner Chappell admits it is not a direct take on the Imperial March, but it is close enough that they don’t care. What is a person to do? Absolutely nothing. Unless you are ready to risk everything little guys don’t take on mega-billion dollar corporations. If SWFT so much as blinks at them they can shut him down.
Being Singled Out
SWFT brings up a great point. Why him?? Why is Disney coming down so hard on him when there are countless other examples of people copying the Star Wars materials. Why are they shutting his project down over a sound bite that they admit is not a use of the theme, but close enough? Why aren’t they going after people dressed like Vader? Why aren’t they going after the multitudes of other videos?
Now after all of this, SWFT is STILL going to proceed forward with Episode 2, despite the risks. This isn’t about making money. This isn’t about someone trying to skirt laws and break the rules. This is a simple fan trying to make FREE product for fellow fans. It is about personal creativity, and I will say this. As a fan of the new films, even The Last Jedi, this Vader film surpassed all of what you have done Disney. Instead of threatening a creative film maker, why don’t you hire him and use his creative passion to make great product! You know nothing of the Star Wars fan base, nor do you appreciate it.
I would love to make a call to action against the Disney bullies, but I know that goes against everything SWFT stands for or would want. Despite all of this you will not find a more class act than SWFT. Keep at it. The FANS support you!