Late last week a very impressive short film, serving as somewhat of a hipper take on the “Mighty Morphin Power Rangers” brand, hit the net. The video, starring “Battlestar Galactica” alum Katee Sackhoff and James ‘Dawson’ Van Der Beek, and produced by “Dredd”‘s Adi Shankar, was likely part-fun, part-audition. Whatever it was, the rights holders of the “Power Rangers”, Haim Saban, kicked a stink and ordered the short film off YouTube, and anywhere else carrying it. Today, it returned to the online video platform.
Seems the hubbub was due not only to Shankar doing it outside of official channels, but the hardcore tone of the short – which doesn’t really fit with the brand.
Shankar has added the disclaimer to the video. “Deboot of the Power Rangers. My take on the FAN FILM. Not a pilot, not a series, not for profit, strictly for exhibition. This is a bootleg experiment not affiliated or endorsed by Saban Entertainment or Lionsgate nor is it selling any product. I claim no rights to any of the characters (don’t send me any money, not kickstarted, this film is free). This is the NSFW version. An alternate safe version is on youtube.”
Director Joseph Kahn tells Deadline that they’ve had to put an age disclaimer on the video so kids don’t mistake it for the actual “Power Rangers”.
“They put these disclaimers on so kids so don’t confuse our super-violent film with their Power Rangers brand. There are no hard feelings. We signed contracts. We can play it anywhere we want on all platforms. I think they realized that people just want to see it.”