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Old 07-19-2017, 02:03 PM   #1
itsastruggle
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using celebrity images and artwork in set design

may be a stupid question, but we are planning and wondering if we can use posters of celebrities and famous art works on the walls in a kids bedroom scene?

my research seems to indicate this is fair use since we are not selling or making money from the images directly, but they are simply in the background as set decoration.

any one know for certain?
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Old 07-19-2017, 05:27 PM   #2
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Is that fair use? My understanding of fair use is that you have to transform it to mean something other than what it was originally designed for. If you're just putting posters on a wall, you haven't changed anything about them. To me that just sounds like copyright infringement. You can probably get away with it. But should you? Your decision.
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Old 07-19-2017, 05:46 PM   #3
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Your understanding is inaccurate. A piece is considered art and thus not a infringement if you take an image and alter it. That has nothing to do with what we are doing or asking.

use of artwork and art is considered fair use in film if it's “Insubstantial use” or “virtually unidentifiable” artwork known as "De minimis". There are court rulings to support this. My question is does having a poster as set decoration meet this definition. If it were a key prop that is referred to and repeatedly shown, then no, it would not be fair use. But thats not what we are talking about here...

Anyone actually have actual knowledge of the topic that might want to give an opinion?
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Old 07-19-2017, 06:37 PM   #4
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*eye-roll

This ain't my first rodeo. Maybe next time you ask a question you might consider showing a tad bit of gratitude to the people who take the time to answer it. If you keep it out of focus you're fine. Don't let the audience see it. I'm not sure that I'll be answering any more of your questions.
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Old 07-19-2017, 06:38 PM   #5
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The truth is that there's a lot of grey area when it comes to fair use. It's not explicitly laid out exactly what constitutes fair use and what doesn't. I've read the law. It doesn't say much. The concrete answer you seek doesn't exist.
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Old 07-19-2017, 08:31 PM   #6
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Fair Use is not a right, it's a defense you can use in court.
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Old 07-19-2017, 09:21 PM   #7
itsastruggle
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no one is seeking a concrete answer. you already demonstrated you dont understand the question. i think every time I ask something on this sight you give a negative know it all answer. find something better to do and stop with the condescending attitude toward everyone. you dont know everything and thats clearly obvious.
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Old 07-19-2017, 09:38 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by itsastruggle View Post
no one is seeking a concrete answer.

Quote:
Originally Posted by itsastruggle View Post
any one know for certain?




There IS a concrete answer: It's a case-by-case basis that ultimately depends on what a judge would say if it ended up in court.

They'd probably rule in your favor for your level of notoriety, lack of profits, and affect on the original product. People likely wouldn't come after you. (doesn't mean they're not allowed to. They just probably won't)
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Old 07-19-2017, 11:42 PM   #9
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I'm the one who got negative? o_O

I'm the one who acted like I know it all? I believe I said, "as I understand it". That implies the possibility of being wrong. You however, have left no such possibility for the things you've claimed to "know". Chill out. I made no attack on you, not even after you attacked me.
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Old 07-19-2017, 11:56 PM   #10
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Interesting article:


Another article put it this way:

Quote:
Just because you believe your work is fair use, doesn’t mean that someone won’t try to sue you anyway.

My sales rep was also an entertainment lawyer. She jumped my ass if I so much as had a visible brand name in a scene. Forget about artwork! Easy enough to make fake posters. I've always tried to avoid those kind of controversies. If that means making my own labels, for liquor bottles and cereal boxes, so be it.
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Old 07-20-2017, 01:09 AM   #11
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Thanks scoopicman
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Old 07-20-2017, 11:22 AM   #12
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Fair use is a minefield, and I hope there is a legal expert here to answer. From what I understand:
You have certain fair use defences that can be used (for example being critical of the artwork itself), but there are complicated copyright issues involved in using anyone else's creative work, depending on the license they use, or who the copyright holder is. I recently had copyright claims made against me for using a piece of music that was not owned by those making the claim - the record labels "artist" (I use the term loosely) had sampled the same soundtrack I had used in their "work". This led to a short legal back and forth before the record label dropped the claim against us. Oddly enough, they hadn't attributed the original music to the creator, and so ended up with a claim against themselves, the "artist", and I dare say it ended up with some eggs on some faces.
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Old 07-20-2017, 03:32 PM   #13
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Better check with a lawyer and even then it is never a definite yes, but it can be a definite no (from that lawyer's perspective). The laws are purposely loose with fair use, and a lawyer would (usually) never even tell you you are totally in the clear. Fair use is actually a defense against infringement, not a right. You may want to use your own gut and be honest with yourself. Best-case fair use pertains to using for news, research, teaching, or critique. Sometimes parody and transformative, which is purposely not defined. For example you can review a CD by a band and show the cover art on your website. In most cases this would be fair use. This type of fair use would not cover you the same way when showing that CD cover in a movie. Perhaps you could get away with it in a music store shot. But nothing is 100% and you can be sued at any time. Then you have to prove that you are in the right, if you are challenged. So if you believe this is fair use, you may want to risk it or ask professional advice. Up to you! There's this recent case: https://www.theverge.com/2017/1/5/14...suit-paramount

PS. You also have to consider all that are involved with what you are showing. If you show a pic of Marlon Brando on the wall, you have to consider who owns that pic, AS WELL AS, the Brando estate for showing his likeness. And if it pertains to a flick, then the studio. Original pic may be owned by someone else than edited pic on poster, but the latter has ownership of the edited version. Many variables!

On the other hand, people break the law millions of times a day with memes and profile pics!
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Old 07-20-2017, 03:41 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joelhall View Post
Fair use is a minefield, and I hope there is a legal expert here to answer. From what I understand:
You have certain fair use defences that can be used (for example being critical of the artwork itself), but there are complicated copyright issues involved in using anyone else's creative work, depending on the license they use, or who the copyright holder is. I recently had copyright claims made against me for using a piece of music that was not owned by those making the claim - the record labels "artist" (I use the term loosely) had sampled the same soundtrack I had used in their "work". This led to a short legal back and forth before the record label dropped the claim against us. Oddly enough, they hadn't attributed the original music to the creator, and so ended up with a claim against themselves, the "artist", and I dare say it ended up with some eggs on some faces.
Basically, like Vanilla Ice suing you for using Ice Ice Baby, and attracting his own lawsuit from Bowie.
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Old 07-20-2017, 05:13 PM   #15
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Fair usually means something like this. I need a car for my shot because the scene calls for it. I HAVE to show a name brand car, no such thing as generic. So the guy drives a Ford. I don't show close ups of the logo or mention Ford, but you can still tell it is a Ford. But that is fair use. Ford will not challenge that, unless you show closeups of logos or mention the brand in dialog. That is "fair" use because you need to show a car for a driving scene. The same way the news can show footage inside a store and not worry about brands, they are news gathering. BUT you are not describing something that is unavoidable in a bedroom. You can take the posters down from the wall. If you were to shoot inside a Hard Rock Cafe and they allowed it, it may be fair use to not take down all the trademarks on the wall. It's really different in each situation man. And use your gut. Is is fair use, or not?

(This question comes up a lot considering things like grocery stores and there is no definitive answer. Some people shoot with the brands there and others replace them or turn them around.)

I imagine Clerks used the critique definition of fair use to mention Star Wars etc.

That's all I got!
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