Legality of movie or video game reviews at

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Old January 12th, 2008, 12:50 PM   #1
Major Player
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: San Francisco, California
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Legality of movie or video game reviews

I currently have no plans for this, and was just wondering, what would it take to make a movie or video game review show for public access TV? Can you talk about the movies freely without permission? If so, would the studios' PR department be willing to send you clips for use on the show?

I know, I know, I should talk to a lawyer, but I don't think it would be worth it just to satisfy my curiosity.
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Old January 12th, 2008, 01:35 PM   #2
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Brief quoting of a text for purposes of criticism or review can fall under "fair use", but whether showing clips from video games is "quoting" is anyone's guess. Certainly they do it on Attack of the Show on G4, but then they are national cable show.
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Old January 12th, 2008, 01:38 PM   #3
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Isn't freedom of speech something built into your consitution over there? Here, anyone is entitled to say whatever they think as long as it isn't slanderous or libellous.[/quote]Here, as well. Unlike the U.K., truth is absolute defense to defamation.Personal opinion is fine. You'd be quite surprised what we get away with on just the BBC, let alone satellite. If the exposure you will give to a media product could be seen by them to be positive, then they often will provide you with a clip. If you're well known then it's easier - but they do deal with small players too - community cable channels, that kind of thing. The only thing - at least here, is that they are still subject to copyright - so although they may give you the dialogue (which is theirs), you could still be liable for any music content if it is licenced separately. i suspect the situation is similar over your side of the water.
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Old January 13th, 2008, 06:21 PM   #4
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You don't need permission to review a game. You will need permission to post images or video capture from the game, which may be hard for the little guy but as long as you come off as professional it should be fine.
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Old January 18th, 2008, 01:06 PM   #5
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Most movie studios, and large game manufactures, will release a series of still images and clips specifically for the press to use to illustrate the film or game reviews. If your station has access to CNN pathfire or NNS content, you can obtain those media kids via those sources. For a film it usually includes the film trailer as well as 5-10 minutes of scenes from the movie itself. Often it is also possible to access the information via the studio's website. The media kit downloads are often found under the press section, and accessable via the studios coorporate site. Also the PR people are usually very glad to help, there job is to help get the word out about their film or game. Just explain to them that you are the producer of a local television show that reviews new films and games and ask them how to get your hands on the press kit for that specific film or game... they are usually very helpful. Specific restrictions in how you can use the materials usually will accompany the press kit, but for reviews you are fine.
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