The Downfall parody videos so popular on YouTube may be going the way of the dodo, thanks to a copyright claim filed by Constantin Film, the production and distribution company responsible for the movie.

The famous Downfall parodies are about as close to required viewing as you’re going to find on the internet. Even my dad has sent me a link to one of them, although I can’t remember which. And for good reason, because there are dozens of the things: Hitler Gets Banned From Xbox Live, Hitler Moves to North Dakota and Hitler Angry at Favre for Staying in Minnesota, to name but a few. Most are fairly dull but a few are absolutely inspired; even Oliver Hirschbiegel , the director of Downfall (Der Untergang in the original German), is a fan, saying in January, “Many times the lines are so funny, I laugh out loud, and I’m laughing about the scene that I staged myself!”

Constantin Films, on the other hand, doesn’t have such a charitable view of the videos and has begun issuing copyright claims to YouTube, forcing their removal. The sheer number of them makes it a daunting task but many, including Hitler Learns Leno is Moving Back to Late Night, the aforementioned Hitler Gets Banned From Xbox Live and even the incredibly meta Hitler Makes a YouTube Video are already gone. New Hitler videos, meanwhile, are apparently getting the axe as soon as they arrive; one about the leaked iPhone controversy was taken down the same day it was uploaded.

The irony of Constantin’s action is obvious: Many movie fans have made a point of seeing Downfall precisely because of these videos. The copyright claim may be valid but the fact is that you can’t buy that kind of publicity, and I cannot fathom why Constantin would ever want to pull the plug on it. Whatever the reason, the bottom line is this: If you want to see any of these videos, you better be quick about it.

And please: Nobody tell Hitler.

Source: Open Video Alliance

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