Trump tweets out video that gets taken down over Batman copyright infringement

Warner Bros. Pictures is taking legal action.

The Bane costume worn by Tom Hardy in 'The Dark Knight Rises.' CREDIT: Jack Taylor/Getty Images
The Bane costume worn by Tom Hardy in 'The Dark Knight Rises.' CREDIT: Jack Taylor/Getty Images

President Donald Trump tweeted out a video Tuesday afternoon under his usual banner, “MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!” but as of Wednesday morning, the video is gone. That’s because it used music from The Dark Knight Rises, the third in Christopher Nolan’s trilogy of Batman films, and Warner Bros. Pictures filed an objection to its usage.

The tweet was finally removed Wednesday morning, but here is a screenshot of what it looked like with the flagged video:

ThinkProgress easily found mirrored versions of the video, which claims to be a “trailer” for Trump’s 2020 campaign, still circulating online. The two-minute video shows a mashup of Trump, various Democrats and liberal celebrities, stock footage of Washington, D.C., and headlines suggesting the success of Trump’s presidency. It also contains the text, “First they ignore you. Then they laugh at you. Then they call you racist,” a strange perversion of a quote often misattributed to Mahatma Gandhi.


Playing throughout the video is the track “Why Do We Fall,” composed by Hans Zimmer for the score of The Dark Knight Rises. A spokesperson for Warner Bros. told BuzzFeed that the music’s use was “unauthorized” and that the company is “working through the appropriate legal channels to have it removed.”

The video appears to have originally been published on YouTube by an account called “MateyProductions,” which claims it is “dedicated to 45TH and the GOP” and “here to show what the MSM refuses to show.” The account previously claimed it was also working on “a Nationalist video.” Other videos on the channel include: “President Donald J Trump ultimate inspirational tribute,” “Believe, once more, in America- President Trump inspirational tribute,” and “Kavanaugh vs. the Democrats.”

Trump himself has spoken out against intellectual property theft, particularly in regards to trade negotiations with China.

But that hasn’t stopped Trump from using pop cultural references to prop up his campaign. Last fall, for example, he tweeted a poster claiming, “Sanctions are coming,” a reference to the Game of Thrones slogan “Winter is coming.” HBO responded by saying it would prefer “our trademark not be misappropriated for political purposes” and even called the president out on Twitter.

After Trump first tweeted the video Tuesday afternoon, other Twitter users immediately recognized the music and alerted Warner Bros. and Zimmer of its use. It was also quickly pilloried, with some users offering parody music alternatives (such as the theme from Arrested Development), and others noting similarities between Trump and Bane, the film’s villain.

The White House has not issued any comment on the video’s removal.