About 2,000 people showed up at Grand Haven State Park for taping on Aug. 24. The Grand Haven segment was the final scene in the video that had close to 2 million hits after debuting at the Detroit Lions home opener on Sept. 9 and then on YouTube.
In the local clip, thousands of people waved from the pier and beach, sporting colorful clothing, towels and beach balls.
The video's producer, Rob Bliss of Grand Rapids-based Status Creative, told the Tribune that he is hopeful the copyright claims will be “worked out” and that the video will again be available for public viewing.
Bliss said prior to the Pure Michigan video being released, he obtained written approval from Universal Music for use of the song, “Good Time,” performed by Owl City and Carly Rae Jepsen. The tune was released in June.
“We had everything worked out, but sadly they had not informed us there was a secondary publishing group we needed to be in touch with,” Bliss said Monday. “We were completely baffled and surprised when we found out the video had been taken down on Friday.”
Bliss said he is confident a deal can be struck with the secondary publisher, Songs Publishing, but he has no idea when that will happen.
“I think we can figure something out,” Bliss said. “We're hopeful. Things are still developing.”
Bliss said he's heard a lot of positive response about the video, including the Grand Haven scenes. Although some locals apparently were upset that there were no close-up shots of residents and that footage of the muddy Grand River made the final cut, Bliss said he hadn't heard any complaints.
“As we looked at where the Grand Haven scene would be placed, it made sense to go with a beautiful landscape shot,” Bliss said. “Most of the scenes only last three seconds and Grand Haven was twice that length. We thought it ended the video on a beautiful note. I thought the river looked beautiful. I thought the whole thing looked beautiful.”
Grand Haven Area Convention and Visitors Bureau Executive Director Marci Cisneros said she was sad to learn of the viral video's exit from the public realm.
“The video was nearing 2 million views, so of course I was disappointed to hear about it being removed,” Cisneros said. “I suppose when there is a promotional piece drawing so much attention, there is bound to be a great amount of scrutiny as well.”
Cisneros said she's heard a lot of positive feedback about the promotional video.
“Folks that have moved away say it makes them realize how much they miss Michigan, and folks from other states say they wish their community could put something together like that," she said. "It's another avenue to tell the Pure Michigan story and another avenue for the Grand Haven area to be involved in something as significant as the Pure Michigan campaign.”
Dave Lorenz, spokesman for Travel Michigan, said the video became a rallying cry for state pride.
“There certainly is a negative connotation whenever somebody claims something was done wrong,” he said. “But the truth of it is, this will bring more attention to the video once it comes back. It's gratifying to hear and see so many comments from people who love the video and want it back up as soon as possible. When you get that kind of response, it means that people care.”