YouTuber-turned-boxer Jake Paul has recently opened up about the struggles he faced during the height of Logan Paul’s controversial Aokigahara forest (famously known as the “suicide forest”) video, revealing that he was also affected by the backlash.
In a dark place: Speaking to journalist Graham Bensinger on Wednesday, Paul, 24, revealed he lost many brand deals — including a $10 million deal with Target — despite not being in his brother’s video.
“Every brand that I was affiliated with dropped me," Paul explained. “I wasn't even the one who filmed the video, right? It was just by way of association, because my brother filmed in the suicide forest, my life was pretty much ruined."
In addition to the brand deals, Paul said his YouTube career was also affected when the streaming giant demonetized his channel. The brothers were also blacklisted from the mainstream online community, and critics began to point out the negative things they had done and lump them together.
Paul then said he later got into drinking and smoking cannabis to cope with the negative media attention he was getting.
He claimed that everything he worked hard for was taken away from him due to the international backlash. People disliked him, and his friends left him, which was when the dark thoughts entered his mind.
“I was like, ‘What's the purpose of my life? This sucks. This is terrible. I wanna run away.’ And I think dark thoughts come into your head of like … ‘I don't wanna be here on Earth anymore,'" Paul opened up.
When asked if he had ever thought of ending his life following all the controversy, Paul said, “Yeah, 100%.”
What happened: Logan Paul ignited international outrage for showing the dead body of a suicide victim inside Aokigahara, located on the slopes of Mt. Fuji, in one of his vlogs in 2017. Many called out the YouTuber for laughing at the situation and profiting off the tragedy through clickbait.
Following the backlash, several people uncovered some of the disrespectful behavior he exhibited during his Japan trip. He allegedly walked around wearing a traditional Japanese kimono and a conical hat while making fun of Asian stereotypes.
Paul was reportedly sued for the video in 2020 after Planeless Pictures, a production company he was working with on the film “Airplane Mode,” lost a $3.5 million licensing deal with Google, NBC News reported.
If you or anyone you know is suffering with thoughts of suicide, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.
Featured Image via Graham Bensinger
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