Controversial YouTuber Logan Paul recently sat down with one of YouTube’s most influential faces and content creator, Casey Neistat, to discuss his recent downward spiral and his hopes to make a comeback.
Paul has been the center of a few controversial issues on social media, but it was his video documenting his trip to the Japanese “suicide forest” in January that triggered a storm of backlash and scorn, which resulted in his YouTube channel being temporarily suspended.
According to New York Magazine, the video posted by Paul to his 15 million YouTube subscribers with the title “We found a dead body in the Japanese Suicide Forest…” contained footage of a man who had apparently died by suicide, with his face blurred. In the video, Paul and his friends can be heard laughing and making light of the tragic situation.
Now, months later, Paul is seeking redemption by making a documentary to provide an in-depth explanation of the circumstances leading up to his decision to post the now deleted video, as reported by The Verge.
Paul reportedly reached out to Casey Neistat, asking him to appear in his upcoming documentary, and he agreed on the condition that Paul addresses a few questions in an interview.
At the beginning of the 35-minute interview, Neistat explained his reason for wanting to sit down with Paul.
“My intention was to see if he is sincere or if the whole thing is a charade for PR, and after watching this whole thing over and over, I’m still not sure,” Neistat says. “To be totally honest, I am still not sure releasing it is the right thing.”
“It’s about a story of a young man from Ohio, a seemingly regular kid, falling into the social-media machine over the past four years,” Paul said referring to his documentary. “Becoming the most hated man in the snap of a finger. The question that the doc answers is how do you recover from that? Can you recover from that?”
“I got so caught up with my actions of being validated by millions of people I forgot to be a human being in that situation and instead decided to be a content creator.”
Neistat was quick to push back, asking if this was simply Paul’s way of trying to gain sympathy and forgiveness from those who may want him to “crawl into a hole and die forever,” as he says in the video.
“I don’t think people can, should or will sympathize with me,” Paul responded. “[The documentary] is an unbiased, objective story that captures how something like that can happen. What went wrong in my life that I thought that was a good idea.”
Many are arguing that Paul has yet to fully understand the consequences of his choices and has yet to even begin to take responsibility for his actions. Some even say Paul is still attempting to justify his actions.
“There’s a difference between being culturally insensitive — being insensitive towards a culture — and being insensitive,” Paul says.
He then went on to claim that his laughing at the dead body was his way of coping, he described the laughter as a “defense mechanism.”
After the video went live, while speaking to The Verge, Neistat said the following.
“Redemption can only be determined by others — it’s up to the community and others to decide whether he gets a second chance. I don’t think that’s a decision he gets to make. There are myriad ways the YouTube community supports creators — it’s what I love about it. For Logan to be back into that, he has to demonstrate that he can have a positive, meaningful impact.”
Paul did not announce a release date for his documentary, but he did go on to promote a boxing match set to happen on August 25. As BBC reports, YouTuber KSI will face off with Paul in a two-fight amateur boxing challenge.
The first match will take place in the London and the second in the United States.