If someone were to actually make a fictionalized action movie based on the MPA's war on piracy, then the sequel might be a good, old-fashioned court drama. Or, maybe it could just be more of the same, considering piracy will never actually go away. Here are some updates from the MPA's ongoing campaign:
- Lawsuits were filed by the MPAA last week against six people accused of selling counterfeit DVDs on eBay. The individuals, who don't seem to be related, as they are all based out of different states, were likely producing decent copies of legitimate discs and selling them cheap to poor suckers. Damages could as high as $150,000 per movie title, per person. This press release is fun because the MPAA has included a little "Buyer Beware" tip list for idiots. For the movie version of these trials, we'd look to last year's The Best of Youth and include a similar courtroom full of innocent, yet mentally unstable victims attempting to communicate the pain felt by being duped. Bootlegs aren't the same as electric shocks, but we'd have to make the audience think it's the same, because that is how importantly the MPAA treats them. Caution: this sequel might be six hours long.
- This past weekend, 14 online auctioneers settled with the New Zealand Federation Against Copyright Theft, on behalf of the MPA, for an undisclosed sum. They also had to agree to stop selling pirated discs. All together, the 14 individuals sold more than 10,000 bootleg DVDs over the past year via New Zealand auction sites. I picture a bit of an anti-climactic ending to the movie version.
- If we wanted to go in sort of the Empire Strikes Back, enemy-wins-this-time direction, we'd follow the trial of Shawn Hogan, a millionaire who is willing to spend as much as it takes to defend himself against the MPAA and their allegations that he shared Meet the Fockers online. He denies this act of piracy and is more interested in clearing his name and fighting the bullying system rather than pay a settlement, which would likely be cheaper for him. We'll have to wait and see what happens, but we could start production without a finished script. Hollywood does it all the time.
- For the more of the same approach, the sequel could focus on last week's raids and seizures by Jakarta Police in Indonesia. They confiscated 520,000 pirated discs and 64 burners in different locations, including the Ratu Plaza shopping mall, which is one of the major outlets for pirated discs in the Asia-Pacific region and therefore the site of constant raids (it was even closed down for much of this year as a result). Reportedly, Indonesia has a piracy rate of 88-percent, which is the highest in the world. Time for Diesel as Glickman to go kick some more ass.
- Though it wouldn't make for a very lengthy film, at least one scene in the sequel would have to concentrate on the police in a Chicago suburb who busted a man recording Miami Vice with a camcorder. AMC Theaters spokespeople couldn't discuss how the man was caught, but the report does mention that a search of the man's home resulted in the finding of 14 burners and more than 500 bootleg DVDs. If the audience was able to watch the bust in the middle of the movie, I imagine that it was ironically more exiting than Michael Mann's snooze fest, which was up on the screen.