When producer Adi Shankar's dark "Power Rangers" fan film spread like wildfire on the Internet, racking up millions of views and shares, it was closely followed by copyright complaints from Saban Entertainment, the company that owns the franchise. First Vimeo took the video down on Wednesday, and YouTube followed suit on Thursday.
That doesn't sit well with Shankar, who blasted the "bullshit" copyright claims during an interview with HuffPost Live's Nancy Redd on Thursday, about an hour after YouTube removed his video. And just minutes before the interview began, Shankar said he received a personal cease-and-desist letter from Warner/Chappell Music claiming he stole the "Power Rangers" theme song.
Shankar's argument is that his film was wholly original and used no footage or music from the original "Power Rangers" series. Furthermore, he says the motivation for making it was all about his personal fandom and not an attempt to monetize someone else's work.
"I'm literally not trying to pitch this to anyone. I'm not trying to use this to get ahead or leverage off their intellectual property. I'm just a fan, you know what I mean? I did this for the 7-year-old kid inside of me," he said.
The short film's director Joseph Kahn defended the project on Twitter, arguing that because it was a fan video created with no intention to make any money, "it is just as if I drew a pic of Power Rangers on a napkin and I gave it to my friend."
Shankar told HuffPost Live he's also worried about what Warner/Chappell's cease-and-desist letter could mean for the use of music by fans and artists online.
"[The music in the film] is an original composition. It's an original score. So now they're attacking the remix culture. So now what does that say about anyone on the Internet who does a musical parody, who does a cover song?" Shankar said.
Watch Adi Shankar's interview with HuffPost Live in the video above.
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