The BBC reported this recently:
Bollywood star Shah Rukh Khan has been ordered to pay a deposit of $200,000 (£125,686) to an Indian court in order to secure release of his latest film.
The actor and his production company have been accused of breaching copyright on superhero movie Ra.One. TV scriptwriter Yash Patnaik says he came up with the concept, and should receive 10% of the film’s profits.
Ra.One is set the be the biggest and most expensive Bollywood film, due to its use of CGI and 3d. If you go to the website, you will see YouTube links, competitions and the eBook graphic novel, starring G.One. This would be a great film for a sci-fi / superhero / Bollywood / world cinema lesson. Can you think of many others?!!
Anyway… back to the issue… what is copyright and why is it such an issue in film?
Copyright in the film sector is particularly complex because of the many layers involved and the fact that there is no single creator of a film. Copyright exists in each of the following layers of a film:
- Artistic - ie. the set designs used in the film
- Dramatic - if the film is based on dance or mime material
- Literary - within the source material and the original screenplay
- Musical - the soundtrack of the film, including both musical score and any lyrics
- Film - the images in the “first fixation” of the film
- Sound recordings - the physical recording of the soundtrack
- Broadcasts and cable usage - for sale of the underlying material and film for other exploitation
- Performance - any live interpretation of the film
- Published editions - within the typographical layout of the page for any published versions of the screenplay
Why the big deal? Well, as the UK Film Council inform us:
In 2006 the audio visual sector lost an estimated £459 million due to copyright infringements, with film losing £338 million. The estimated loss of £102 million in cinema admissions equates to 13.4% of the legal market in the UK. An estimated loss of £238 million DVD retail sales equates to 15% of the legitimate market.
Market research carried out in 2006 found that:
1. 26% of the UK population had acquired or viewed pirate film material.
2. Criminal gain from counterfeit and home-copied DVDs was worth an estimated £169 million.
3. The proportion of people downloading and burning films increased by 26% from 2005 to 2006.
The MPAA (Motion Picture Association of America released an in-depth study into this a few years ago. They displayed the way industries would be able to take it on using new technologies:
Warner Brothers partners with Free Record Shop using P2P distribution
Universal partners with LoveFilm in UK, offering downloads
CBS and Verizon FiOSTV partner to carry select programs
Disney offers feature length film on I-tunes for $9.99
CBS delivers college basketball “March Madness” online o ABC offers free downloads at ABC.com
Disney re-launches MovieBeam – online delivery of VOD
NBC Universal launches Aeon Digital set top box
CBS offers select programs at $1.99 on-demand
Warner Bros. launches P2P service In2Movies in Germany
Fox announces VOD and DVD windows collapsed
NBCUniversal announces Peer Impact deal
Disney announces deal with iTunes
Google Video beta launched – essentially is going with a wholesale reseller model – creating an iTunes like store.
If you are teaching this and need some help, look at the FilmEdu resources below. If you need anything else, please pop a post below!
Link: BBC Story
Link: FACT UK