The director of The People’s Joker, LGBT parody of DC Comics characters, wants to fight to show her film
after the movie The People’s Joker was withdrawn from Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), the director VeraDrew issued a statement to express that despite the wishes of “a media conglomerate that will remain nameless”, the film will screen again at various film festivals around the world.
The People’s Joker tells the story of an aspiring clown who struggles with her gender identity as she prepares to be cast in a comedy show inspired by the popular DC villain. Despite the fact that it seemed that the director was breaking some law by making a film of a character who does not own the rights, drew explained that his project it is completely legal for being a parody.
“On the eve of our premiere… a media conglomerate that will remain anonymous sent me an angry letter pressuring me not to screen (…) It was disappointing (especially since I went to great lengths with legal advice to make it fall under parody/fair use) ”.
The People’s Joker had been announced in the program of the TIFF What “a parody” and part of a universe “not authorized by DC Comics, Warner Bros. or any other person claiming the rights of the trademarks used.” For this reason, it was considered within the legal figure of copyright known as “fair use”where proprietary names and materials may be used for parody.
The festival has shown support for the director and they decided together to reduce the later projections “to mitigate possible setbacks.”
“Any other film festival would have withdrawn us immediately, but after being completely transparent with TIFF, we agreed to premiere as planned and lower our subsequent screenings to mitigate potential setbacks.”
They want to Fight for its distribution
Although the “media conglomerate filed a document against The People’s Joker to prevent it from being displayed in the future, drew He explained that he will look for a distribution partner to release safely.
“We are humbly looking for a distribution partner who believes in what we are doing. It will protect us, and eventually help us make this film accessible to trans people and their families everywhere. FREE THE PEOPLE’S JOKER”
As her message suggests, the director trusts that The People’s Joker continue with a display process. However, at this point, the legal action could be lengthy and the film is likely to face more problems in the future before it gets released. Not to mention, given the subject matter and characters, this legal battle could be very public, so other risk-averse production houses would rather not get into legal trouble with you. Warner Bros.
What do cinephiles and cinephiles think?