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Old June 2nd, 2009, 01:34 PM   #1
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"Talent" Release for use of old "Home Movies"

I'm about to begin a search for old "home movies" of a father/daughter. I see this as something I could aquire from an individual. I am going to use these home movies to compile parts of a music video along with some pieces I will shoot myself (band performence pieces, etc.)..

My question is, would I need a standard talent release form signed by the parties in the "home movies"? What if a person in the video is deceased? I'm looking to aquire footage from "over the years" to show the relationship of the father and daughter over the childhood/teen years, which could possibly lead me to a situation where the father in the home videos has passed.
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Old June 2nd, 2009, 03:14 PM   #2
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Talent Releases for the Deceased

Up front, IANAL, so consult with your legal professional, but...

I believe that in the event of someone's death, their image and the rights to display that image pass to whoever is the executor of their estate. So in your situation, you may be looking for a spouse, a child, etc. in order to secure the rights for someone who is deceased.

Having said that, depending on the budget of the project, it may just be cheaper and easier to hire different actors to play the daughter as she grows up, and use makeup, hairpieces, etc. to age-shift the father. Just a thought...

Best of Luck!

Jeff
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Old June 3rd, 2009, 06:56 AM   #3
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And remember too that the footage itself is copyright (even non-commerical "home-movies" are copyright; it automatically exists from the moment the work is created) and you'll need a license to use it. For something like this it needn't be anything complicated, just a paragraph signed by the owner of the footage giving you permission to use it and the exchange of some token payment such as $1, but you still need to get it in writing, just like the talent releases, in order to keep your legal ducks in a row.
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Old June 3rd, 2009, 07:12 AM   #4
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Thanks to you both. I figured releases would still need to be signed and assumed that in the event of one of the subjects having passed the release would be signed by spouse or children, but needed some other input to feel I was moving in the right direction.

Steve, I did not realize that home movies had any sort of copyright attached, thank you for mentioning this, for it could save a lot of trouble later on.
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Old June 3rd, 2009, 07:20 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brandon Nichols View Post
I'm about to begin a search for old "home movies" of a father/daughter. I see this as something I could aquire from an individual. I am going to use these home movies to compile parts of a music video along with some pieces I will shoot myself (band performence pieces, etc.)..

My question is, would I need a standard talent release form signed by the parties in the "home movies"? What if a person in the video is deceased? I'm looking to aquire footage from "over the years" to show the relationship of the father and daughter over the childhood/teen years, which could possibly lead me to a situation where the father in the home videos has passed.
As a general rule, if the home movies were taken where the subjects had an expectation of privacy, e.g. at home, you will need a release. There are also concerns regarding false light defamation and, possible, commercial appropriation of likeness, particularly if the music video is used to advertise the band. Commercial appropriation law varies from state to state.
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