Heidi vs. The State: The Groundbreaking Verdict
Evil forces got in Heidi's way in the spring of 2019 when one of the screenwriters of MAD HEIDI received a dismissal without notice from the Cantonal Police of Zurich. It was only thanks to a mighty army of Heidi supporters that enough donations were collected to support our co-writer in his legal battle.
In March 2019, the 35-year-old who worked for the Zurich Airport Police was fired without notice after 13 years of commendable service, because in his leisure time, he worked as a co-writer on the MAD HEIDI script.
Finally, the administrative court of the Canton of Zurich has made a clear decision in favor of artistic freedom, devastating for the cantonal police authorities. The judges ruled that the dismissal was "blatantly abusive". And they went on to say: "The dismissal is not even remotely comprehensible, and the material defectiveness alone is so serious that simply stating that the dismissal was unlawful and awarding compensation is not enough to remedy this injustice."
If you understand German, do not miss out on reading the full verdict here.
THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT!
Without the financial support of over 130 MAD HEIDI fans who helped to cover the legal costs of over 10'000 Swiss Francs through crowdfunding, justice would never have been served. In fact, after his dismissal without notice, our man initially did not even receive unemployment insurance for three months. This means that only those who have the appropriate financial means can get justice.
All the more we would like to thank all the courageous supporters. The verdict is a victory for artistic freedom and a victory for justice!
This judgment is not yet legally binding and in theory, the canton could now take the matter to the Federal Supreme Court. If there is no appeal, your "Heidi vs. The State" donations will return to the development budget of the movie. Whatever the outcome of the case, this ruling by the Administrative Court is groundbreaking and historic in terms of artistic freedom!
An excerpt from the verdict:
One of the accusations (see verdict 3.1):
"After viewing the trailer, which was allegedly 'glorifying violence and racism to a high degree', and after reviewing further 'evidence' such as the website of the planned film and a newspaper article, it was clear to them (the Cantonal Police) that it would be extremely problematic if the complainant is involved in the film MAD HEIDI."
The reply from the Court (see verdict 4.3.3)
"However, contrary to the opinion of the Cantonal Police, the stylistic elements used in the trailer, namely that of exaggeration, do not give reason to fear that the complainant had participated or wanted to participate in a film which was 'about the senseless depiction of bloody violence and racism'."