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Law students warn sexual predators in 'New Rules' parody

Newshub logoNewshub 9/08/2018 Emma Hurley

Students and young lawyers are sending a stark warning to sexual predators in a new parody video.

The Wellington Law Revue's music video is a recreation of popstar Dua Lipa's hit New Rules.

It demands a new set of rules and workplaces free of dirty jokes, gropes, and assault after the revelations of sexual abuse and harassment that have rocked the profession this year.

a man and a woman standing in a room © Provided by MediaWorks NZ Limited

"The video is supposed to show women in an extremely strong position, taking control which sometimes just isn't really the reality," co-director and fifth-year law student Henry Law told Newshub.

"We're basically just trying to say that what happened, what came out in February, what came out in March, just because those potential individuals or potential organisations were vilified that doesn't necessarily mean that the problem is over. This is an endemic problem."

Law student Leilani Taula provides the vocals and is the star of the music video, playing an HR rep moving through a law firm and telling people off for harassing summer clerks.

Fifth-year law student and co-director Sara Bradley said Dua Lipa's massively popular song was an obvious choice to take inspiration from.

"It presents a really fun vision of female solidarity and healing, and to be able to kind of put a spin on that for this issue was really just a perfect fit," she said.

The first line of the song references Zoë Lawton's #metoo blog, which has attracted hundreds of submissions from lawyers detailing their accounts of sexual harassment and assault at work.

The video ends with what the directors call the "nuclear option", a final chorus that includes threats to burn down law firms and kill all men - which the directors stressed is a joke.

a group of people standing next to a woman © Provided by MediaWorks NZ Limited

"Obviously exaggeration is an important part of comedy and we just kind of wanted to end it on a big note," Ms Bradley said.

"We just want people to think more about how they treat others and just put themselves in the shoes of someone who's coming into such an intimidating environment for the first time and being treated without respect."

a group of people standing next to a window © Provided by MediaWorks NZ Limited

At the close of the video the male partners are outraged at the threats issued by the women. Ms Taula asks them "Can't you take a joke?" and winks at the camera, mimicking what a potential abuser might say to a summer clerk.

a group of people standing next to a man in a suit and tie © Provided by MediaWorks NZ Limited

The Wellington Law Revue is an annual music comedy and skit show run by law students and young professionals. The show will take place from September 13 - 15.

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