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Old September 3rd, 2005, 10:48 AM   #1
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Who's the 'Permission Guy'?

I've got a movie where, in one shot, a Lakers poster is seen on the wall of a kids bedroom....in another shot, there's a photo of the kid's dad wearing a Dodgers jersey.

I've been told, via this forum, that these things will definitely need permission -

my question is, in contacting these teams' front offices for permission,
WHO do I ask for?
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Old September 3rd, 2005, 11:36 AM   #2
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Moore
my question is, in contacting these teams' front offices for permission, WHO do I ask for?
The licensing department. But I can tell you, you won't be able to afford it! Unless you are independently wealthy.

Jay
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Old September 3rd, 2005, 01:46 PM   #3
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On the other hand, they might very well give you permissions to use it for free. Be prepared to offer at least a description of the scene!
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Old September 3rd, 2005, 03:00 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Moore
I've got a movie where, in one shot, a Lakers poster is seen on the wall of a kids bedroom....in another shot, there's a photo of the kid's dad wearing a Dodgers jersey.

I've been told, via this forum, that these things will definitely need permission -

my question is, in contacting these teams' front offices for permission,
WHO do I ask for?
I'd start with public relations or media relations and many companys and organizations have a film and video liason office. And as someone else said, be preprared to show 'em the script - they might be fine having their trademark on the hero's shirt but reject allowing it on the bad guy's.
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Old September 3rd, 2005, 04:40 PM   #5
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I had asked Victonox, the makers of Swiss Army knives, about using their logo in a movie. They wanted a description of the scene, which I provided. They said they were absolutely horrified at the thought of my using their logo, and wanted written proof I would not use it. Ya win some, ya lose some ;)
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Old September 3rd, 2005, 07:14 PM   #6
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Keith, So this was for the murder weapon in a serial-Zombie flick?

How do you do written proof that you are not going to do something?
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Old September 3rd, 2005, 08:06 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Moore
I've got a movie where, in one shot, a Lakers poster is seen on the wall of a kids bedroom....in another shot, there's a photo of the kid's dad wearing a Dodgers jersey.

I've been told, via this forum, that these things will definitely need permission -
Whoever told you that told you wrong. You MAY need permission, but you also may not. Your description indicates there are potential problems involving copyright as well as trademark. Check with an IP lawyer in your area.
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Old September 3rd, 2005, 08:07 PM   #8
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Bob- You are close, it was a spoof of Scream and other horror/slasher flicks. The weapon was something of a cross between a pocket knife, and something Rambo would have been proud to own. And they frowned upon it... tsk, tsk.
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Old September 4th, 2005, 03:15 AM   #9
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Hi there,

Please tell us where you are planning on showing your film. Sundance?, the local art house?, the YMCA?, your nephew's birthday party? or a movie theater?

Major venue? You should follow the previous advice. Minor venue..... "Better to ask for forgiveness than for permission."

I know I will catch hell for this.....

Steph
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Old September 4th, 2005, 04:30 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Keith Forman
They said they were absolutely horrified at the thought of my using their logo, and wanted written proof I would not use it. Ya win some, ya lose some ;)
Tell me you sent them a photocopy of your ass as written proof!
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Old September 5th, 2005, 06:48 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stephanie Wilson
Hi there,

Please tell us where you are planning on showing your film. Sundance?, the local art house?, the YMCA?, your nephew's birthday party? or a movie theater?

Major venue? You should follow the previous advice. Minor venue..... "Better to ask for forgiveness than for permission."

I know I will catch hell for this.....

Steph
Not giving you hell but what if the only acceptable apology to earn that forgiveness comes in the form of a 6 or 7 -figure cheque....
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Old September 5th, 2005, 11:23 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stephanie Wilson
You should follow the previous advice. Minor venue..... "Better to ask for forgiveness than for permission."
I don't know anyone who suggested this, nor is this good advice at all. Copyright and trademark infringement are "strict liability," meaning you could be held liable for damages regardless of your intent. "Better to ask a lawyer and feel confident there will be nothing to forgive."
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Old September 6th, 2005, 03:39 AM   #13
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Paul, how about a dry run...let me describe the scenes to you:
THE BANNER -
'hard cut to a child's bedroom at night...the back wall is in focus, with a Lakers
banner hung on the wall...dad enters frame, walks in front of Lakers banner, camera pans down to child - total screen time for Lakers banner: 2.5 seconds'
THE JERSEY - 'fade in on moving photo montage....old photo of dad & son...dad is wearing a replica dodgers jersey with shorts....total screen time for Dodgers jersey...less than 2 seconds.'
GENRE - G-rated family drama.
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Old September 6th, 2005, 07:38 AM   #14
 
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From the NBA's site:

"The basketball-related content and materials... (including, but not limited to, video, audio, photos, text, images, statistics, updated scores, logos and other intellectual property related to the NBA and its member teams)... No Basketball Content... may be reproduced, republished, uploaded, posted, transmitted, reproduced, distributed, copied, publicly displayed or otherwise used except as provided in these Terms of Use without the written permission of NBAMV."

The MLB is more succinct: "The following are trademarks or service marks of Major League Baseball entities and may be used only with permission of Major League Baseball Properties, Inc."

That pretty well says it. And "written permission" or "permission" means you've been granted a license to use it.

Jay
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Old September 6th, 2005, 01:40 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jay Gladwell
From the NBA's site:

"The basketball-related content and materials... (including, but not limited to, video, audio, photos, text, images, statistics, updated scores, logos and other intellectual property related to the NBA and its member teams)... No Basketball Content... may be reproduced, republished, uploaded, posted, transmitted, reproduced, distributed, copied, publicly displayed or otherwise used except as provided in these Terms of Use without the written permission of NBAMV."

The MLB is more succinct: "The following are trademarks or service marks of Major League Baseball entities and may be used only with permission of Major League Baseball Properties, Inc."

That pretty well says it. And "written permission" or "permission" means you've been granted a license to use it.

Jay
These reservations-of-rights statements are nice, but don't necessarily have legal effect. I can use the mark, "Major League Baseball" without permission provided that there is no likelihood of consumer confusion or dilution -- in fact, I just did. There is no such thing as ownership of words -- there are only the rights protected by law, i.e. copyright, trademark, patent and trade secret.
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