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California Documentary Filmmaker Faces Censorship Challange from California Coastal Commission

Monday, June 8th, 2009

NEWS RELEASE

SCARY DEVELOPMENT FOR ALL FILMMAKERS

SINS OF COMMISSION, an award winning documentary film by Southern California filmmaker Richard Oshen, is facing legal action by the California Coastal Commission, which has in fact just served Mr. Oshen with a subpoena in order to obtain a copy of the film.

The revealing expose follows ordinary citizens who have come up against the unelected Commission’s autocratic actions wielded, surprisingly, without accountability or oversight.

The California Coastal Commission may try to silence the film because it reveals strong links between California’s increasingly catastrophic wildfires and the Coastal Commission’s prohibition of critical brush clearance.

-Richard Oshen,writer, director, SINS OF COMMISSION

SINS OF COMMISSION examines decades of the Commission’s land use policies and questions how a government body could and, indeed did, unilaterally extend its jurisdiction from 1000 yards landward of the coastline to 5 miles inland.

No matter what your politics, this isn’t America if a quasi-governmental body is going to dictate whether you have the right to see a film. This is a very chilling development, and does not bode well for documentary filmmakers or freedom of speech.

SINS OF COMMISSION is ” a work in progress”. For a governmental body to demand a work print is like asking a journalist for their notes, or an author for a copy of their book before publication.

To think, if the government doesn’t like what the see or read - they could issue an injunction and prevent a story from getting out is scary… very scary.

-Richard Oshen,writer, director SINS OF COMMISSION

Scores of California families and individual landowners have been required to forfeit their constitutional and property rights as a condition for residential development, and in many cases, to avoid arrest and fines reaching the millions.

Help support freedom of speech for all films.

I will vigorously defend SINS OF COMMISSION. This is an out-and-out assault on FREEDOM OF SPEECH and the future of all expose documentary films hangs in the balance.

I urgently need your help. SINS OF COMMISSION is a fiscally sponsored by the International Documentary Association, a 501 c3 non profit organization. Support SINS OF COMMISSION, freedom of speech, documentary film making, and the International Documentary Association all in one fell swoop.

For more information please contact me at:  sinsofcommission@gmail.com

Thank you,

Richard Oshen



 
 
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