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Old December 12th, 2001, 12:36 PM   #1
infinity Atlast
Posts: n/a
Company logos/image rghts...

Theoretical question.

If I created an original image or 3D model graphic
design, that were to be used in a story I was writing
for a film (to be used later as a company logo
"opening" for future projects), and that film were to
be picked up by a distributer, or even bought
outright, would the ownership and rights of that
image/design, be transfered as well? Could I retain
ownership of that image/design?

The only example I could give would be say, the "E.T.
image, over the moon" used by AMBLIN ENTERTAINMENT as
a company logo for other projects.
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Old December 12th, 2001, 06:25 PM   #2
Regular Crew
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Denver, CO
Posts: 290
If that is the name of the group that actually made the movie, then the rights would remain with you. Companies only buy rights for distribution/merchandising usually (which carries over to when the film is released on video). They will slap their logo on the movie before yours appears onscreen. I see this a lot with independant films, etc. Your image will still be under your copyright. For basic copyrights all you have to do is put 2001 DV Productions (or whatever your name is). If you REALLY want to go all the way you can make it a registered trademark, which will cost you some cash. Then you would have the by the image anytime it shows up.
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Old December 12th, 2001, 07:21 PM   #3
infinity Atlast
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What if that image/design were to be used in the actual movie itself as part of the story? If I copyright it beforehand, would that be an issue?

An example would be something like creating a halloween mask using it in a film for the killer to wear or something (no, this is not what I plan to do), then using the mask as a company logo opening for the next movie project. Would I still hold the rights to it, even though it was shown all over the last movie? Would the first distributers be mad?
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Old December 12th, 2001, 09:51 PM   #4
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: Chigasaki, Japan.
Posts: 1,660
Even if you sell the "Commercial" distrubition rights to your work, be it photo, movie, song, manuscript etc, you still retain the rights to what is called your Intellectual Property. As Joe said, people buy the distrubition rights to your work, that just means they buy the right to sell your work under their name.

To be on the safe side, just include a specific clause in the contract that states you reserve the right to use any image in the movie for your own promotional use. That should cover you
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Old December 13th, 2001, 12:57 AM   #5
infinity Atlast
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Thanks for the info. I'm coming to realize that a film project in pre-production can take anywhere from six months to two years of good planning, but all the major decisions happen at the very beginning. I would consider something like this one of them for myself personally, others may not. I understand. But I appreciate the information and the support.

I came across a website tonight,, which is selling books regarding topics like this. Has anyone read any of these?

Are there any good suggestions regarding books on business and legal issues?

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