The Importance Of Intellectual Property In Film

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It is essential to note that intellectual property is everywhere in motion pictures, from the script -which can be based on other works, real events or persons- to the soundtracks, costumes, characters, lines, and technical performances . Even the diverse technologies and equipment have been subject to costly patent wars since the first innovations of the Lumière Brothers and Thomas Edison in the late nineteenth century . With the apparition of the latest digital technologies, IP laws are consistently facing new issues (Litman, 2017, p. 19). Intellectual property is thus omnipresent in the film industry and cannot be ignored by filmmakers. Wasko and Jewell, who studied the ‘script market’, retracing with precision the journey of a script from…show more content…
45). Such task is completed through the ‘Chain of Title’, which gathers the necessary documentation to guaranty that a film is entirely owned and free from infringement (, n.d.). The Chain of Title is essential for every cinematic project to be produced and distributed as it provides the detailed list of copyright holders. Such process illustrates how the film industry has organised itself in order to meet the requirements of IP laws. II. The consequences of a constraining Intellectual Property law Intellectual Property is thus an important matter in the film industry. It has been at the center of controversies and lawsuits from the beginning and has had various consequences on the film market. Nowadays, there is the issue of rising digital technologies, which increasingly threaten authors’ intellectual property rights by enabling new ways to circumvent the restrictions that were naturally imposed by the IP law on cultural consumptions. The brightest example is of course the phenomenon of piracy, which has struck on global scale for decades. Piracy affects many, if not all, cultural and creative sectors. The music and the film industries are among the most impacted ones, especially since the…show more content…
Yet, the Betamax gave unlimited access to the contents users had recorded on it, just as it is the case nowadays when users illicitly download files online. One could wonder what actually differentiate the use of videotaping from streaming and downloading. Litman, for instance, argues that it is the “epithet we apply to them” (2017, p. 85), as well as the ‘democratization’ promised by new technologies that has accentuated and multiplied the phenomenon of copying contents for private uses (ibid. p. 85 and p. 111). Nevertheless, we now have enough hindsight to admit that the VCR did not harm the film industry. In fact, it has forced the industry to reinvent itself, and studios did so by taking over the VHS market, incidentally beating the VCRs (Bettig, 1996 pp. 176-179; Gary Klein, 2011; Frederick Wasser, 2002, p. 120). This period in the film sector history has proven its actors have the necessary means and resources to adapt to new technologies and to meet the public demands. One could underline that it is once more the case with the rise of online streaming and the apparition of new entertainment businesses offering substantial catalogues available on video-on-demand for affordable subscriptions. Such revolutionary companies are efficiently combating piracy since, on one

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