Just six hours after the video was posted on the Internet, officials went into action and identified and placed the young men and women behind bars. Although some reports claim that a few of those arrested were released, nothing has been confirmed.
A variety of videos of people creating their own video versions of the singer’s “Happy” song are featured on YouTube. The video in question was released a few weeks ago and features the names of the dancers and outtakes. The dancers are even quoted saying “’Happy’ was an excuse to be happy. We enjoyed every second of making it.”
Williams took to Twitter to air his grievances about the act:
It's beyond sad these kids were arrested for trying to spread happiness http://t.co/XV1VAAJeYI
— Pharrell Williams (@Pharrell) May 21, 2014
Iran President Hassan Rouhani also posted his thoughts about the actions on Twitter, taking an excerpt from his June 2013 victory speech:
"#Happiness is our people's right. We shouldn't be too hard on behaviors caused by joy." 29/6/2013
— Hassan Rouhani (@HassanRouhani) May 21, 2014
To which Williams replied with:
— Pharrell Williams (@Pharrell) May 22, 2014
The dancers, who are seen in sunglasses and silly clothes dancing on top of Tehran rooftops and alleys, claim they were deceived and were told the video wouldn’t be released anywhere. Some also allege they were invited to perform in the video to practice acting.
Watch the video:
This harsh act is just another example of how Iran is cracking down on anyone in its country who displays behavior that is associated with the West, even despite its president’s moderate views. Last week, hard-liners marched over women not wearing hijabs and dressing provocatively.
Hard-liners believe that President Rouhani is too lenient towards those who question Islam sanctity or women who are not sufficiently veiled.
What do you think about the video and what happened? Leave your comments below.
Image via Pharrell Williams, Twitter