An actress who says she was tricked into appearing in the anti-Muslim film "The Innocence of Muslims" has sued YouTube for failing to remove clips of the film from its site.
Cindy Lee Garcia alleges that she was cast in the movie after responding to a Backstage ad for a film called "Desert Warrior," which she says was supposed to be "an adventure film ... about ancient Egyptians."
Garcia, who sued the film's producer, Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, as well as YouTube, says that the final version of the movie makes it appear as if she "voluntarily performed in a hateful anti-Islamic production."
Garcia says in her lawsuit that she has received death threats since the film was posted to YouTube. She adds that she no longer babysits her grandchildren, and that she lost her job due to security concerns sparked by her appearance in the movie. Online clips from the film recently triggered a wave of protests in the Middle East, including a deadly attack on the American consulate in Libya.
She says in her complaint, filed on Tuesday in state court in Los Angeles, that YouTube rejected her request to remove the film. Among other allegations, Garcia argues that the site's refusal to take down the clip violates her right to control the commercial use of her image -- which some courts consider a form of intellectual property. While Web sites typically can't be sued based on clips uploaded by users, there's an exception for material that infringes intellectual property.
YouTube hasn't yet responded to the lawsuit.