December 13th, 2013
11:09 AM ET

Will Ferrell Joins Fight to Free American Shezanne Cassim

The fight to free an American being held in a United Arab Emirates prison is intensifying, Sara Sidner reports.

The UAE, for the first time, is acknowledging the imprisonment of Shezanne Cassim, and the 29-year-old is now getting some help from Washington and from some big names in Hollywood.

The comedy website "Funny or Die" released a video urging the UAE to "Free Shez" for doing something they do all the time – make a video that's supposed to be funny.

Cassim has been imprisoned since April, his family says, for posting what was intended to be a funny video on the Internet.

It was meant to be a piece of comedy, a 19-minute video that pokes fun at a clique of Dubai teens who are influenced by hip-hop culture. In the 1990s, the label "Satwa G" was coined for a group of suburban teens who were known to talk tougher than they really were.

But the situation isn't funny any more.

His next hearing is scheduled for Monday, December 16.

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Filed under: Videos • World News
soundoff (5 Responses)
  1. Leena

    one should understand and learn, educate ones self when living in a foreign country. With all thats going on in the middle east i absolutely understand why UAE held the man in jail. He offended the country, funny or not.
    His video implied violence in a country that is trying so hard to make its population feel safe!
    this man is not in jail for poking fun of gangsta style, he is in jail because this video suggests violence!
    PEOPLE THINK!!!

    December 24, 2013 at 4:47 am | Reply
  2. Lauren Cox

    Wow. A has been actor from C movies has gotten involved. The UAE has no idea the media frenzy that Will Ferrell can bring to bear. On the other hand if the judges were forced to watch the Anchorman and then threatened with having to watch Anchorman 2, they just might change their mind. Ferrell's movies could be adopted as interrogation techniques by the CIA and every member of Al Qaeda will be spilling their secrets (or puking out their guts) within half an hour.

    December 23, 2013 at 9:44 pm | Reply
  3. Julxrp

    Reblogged this on Julx's Blog.

    December 15, 2013 at 1:08 pm | Reply
  4. Ailsa Reynolds

    The UAE is like a bubble. The people who live there think it is a westernised country. It is definitely not. Everything is controlled. There is no room for individuality no matter what people may say.

    December 13, 2013 at 12:59 pm | Reply

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