COPYRIGHT LAW PROJECT
THE ISSUE OF COPYRIGHTABILITY OF CHARACTERS
THE ISSUE OF COPYRIGHTABILITY OF CHARACTERS
Characters exist in human, animal, and even extra-terrestrial form, in literature, films and other forms of dramatic visualizations, and are shaped by their names, personalities, characteristics and manners. There are several such characters that the public is familiar with, and such popular figures form part of an industry worth trillions, thereby necessitating protection for them against duplication. Enter copyright law. This law, which finds its origin in the Statute of Anne, seeks to strike a balance between …show more content…
These include visual characters (as observed in movies, plays, etc) and animated characters (such as cartoons and comics). On the other hand, fictional characters are described using words as a medium, and coupled with the reader 's imagination, they form a picture in the mind. Since pictorial representations are more relatable and easier to commit to memory, graphic characters are easily accorded protection under Copyright Law. However, it should be kept in mind that although the Copyright Act defines 'artistic work ', such work is inclusive of drawings, paintings and sculptures, not characters . For instance, copyright law may enable an artist to protect a sketch of Mickey Mouse under the category of artistic work, however, the character of Mickey Mouse is derived by the reader from the various episodes or comics it is found in, and therefore doesn 't fall under the ambit of artistic work. Further, the book or movie the character appears in may be copyrighted as a whole (as a literary or cinematographic work), but that doesn 't prevent reproduction of the character.
However, it has been observed that the courts have exercised leniency in granting protection to graphic characters with visual representations that are easily identifiable. In the case of Hill v Whalen Martell , the court opined that the stage characters of Nutt and Giff were absolute copies of the plaintiff 's characters Mutt
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Copyright, Design and Patents Act 1988 – protects the rights of the creators of literary, dramatic, musical, and artistic works, recordings and broadcasts. Copyrighted material can only be copied with the copyright owner’s permission, which includes books, music, photographs, drawings, diagrams, etc;
This is the case in Brian Helgeland film, A Knight’s Tale. Helgeland adapted Geoffrey Chaucer’s “The Knight’s Tale,” one of the poems that make up the volume The “Canterbury Tales”. Not many of the characters from the poem made it into the movie. The only characters that are noticeably in A Knight’s Tale are Arcita, Palamon, and Emily. These characters are represented as William, Count Adhemar, and Jocelyn. The movie is very entertaining. Though the
A total of 24 interviews were conducted to help determine whether it is necessary for film adaptations to be faithful to their original texts, if they want to succeed in today’s cinema industry.Having carried out the interviews, the findings and discussion have been divided into four sections:
For example, on page 326, “Captain Tidy is a concept I have fantasized about for many years. He is a masked avenger for the forces of neatness. When a person litters, Captain Tidy comes swooping out of nowhere and explains to the litterer, in polite terms, that he or she is being a jerk.” Captain Tidy is a caricature in this passage. He is a character that the narrator made up so he could have some fun but also tell people to pick up their trash. The narrator and his friend would dress up in their costumes and go out in public to stop people from littering. The reason why Captain Tidy is considered a caricature is because he is a made up character. Another example of a caricature is on page 326, “But if I knew that if Captain Tidy had a SIDEKICK, a LARGE sidekick, a large, TRAINED OPTOMETRIST sidekick, that would be a whole different story. And thus Jeff and I became Captain Tidy and Neatness Man. The other caricature in this passage is Neatness Man. Just like Captain Tidy, Neatness Man is not real. He is also a made up character to try to get people to stop
Reinterpretations have played a major role in all forms of entertainment. They provide another, unique perspective on something old, something you may have read or seen. They make it possible to relive, or re-experience something that you cherished, or they can enable you to love something you hated. Reinterpretations have a lot of artistic power, as can be seen in a review of The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, written by Robert Louis Stevenson, compared to The Incredible Hulk, directed by Louis Leterrier. The value of reinterpretations can be explored through the use of these two texts by looking at the theme of duplicity in man, and analysing the characters Bruce Banner and Dr Jekyll.
A motion for summary judgment is granted when the similarities concern only non-copyrightable elements of an allegedly infringed work or when no reasonable trier of fact could find the works substantially similar. Boisson v. Banian, Ltd., 273 F.3d 273 (2d Cir. 2001); Castle Rock Entm 't, Inc. v. Carol Publ 'g Grp., Inc., 150 F.3d 132 (2d Cir. 1998); Williams v. Crichton, 84 F.3d 581 (2d Cir. 1996); Walker v. Time Life Films, Inc., 784 F.2d 44 (2d Cir 1986). When the works contain protectable and unprotectable elements, the court applies a more discerning test, extracting the unprotectable elements from the works and asking whether the protectable elements, standing alone, are substantially similar. Knitwaves Inc. Lollytogs Ltd., 71 F.3d 996 (2d Cir. 1995) The discerning ordinary observer test must be applied in conjunction with the total concept and feel after the unprotectable elements are eliminated from consideration. Boisson, 273 F.3d 273. An allegedly infringing work is considered substantially similar to a copyrighted work if the ordinary lay observer unless he set out to detect the disparities, would regard the two works appeal as the same. Boisson 273 F.3d 273; Knitwaves, 71 F.3d 996. In determining whether or not the allegedly infringing work falls below the quantitative
The law must come to terms with the difference between artistic intent and economic intent. Artistic freedom is more important for the health of society than the supplemental and extraneous incomes derived from private copyright fees. They create art of police and control, since no matter how the original intent of the copyright laws are, today, they are subverted to censor resented works that suppress the public’s need to reuse and reshape
This is important to protect a creator 's moral and economic rights and integrity of their work: So they are recognised as the creator of their work (no one else is identified as the creator) able to protect their work from derogatory treatment; inappropriate modification, distortion or other interference with its integrity. Appropriation is not copying or visual plagiarism.
A portrait or picture, within the meaning of the statute, means “any recognizable likeness of a person”, which may include a drawing, painting, sketch, cartoon, or a caricature. However, to constitute a portrait or picture, the likeness must be to such a degree that the individual’s image is instantly recognizable and not a mere reference to the person. Onassis v. Christian Dior-New York, 472 N.Y.S.2d 254 (Sup. Ct. 1984). Further, while the law does prohibit one from representing themselves as another person, it does not prohibit one from evoking mere characteristics of another individual. Allen v. National Video, Inc., 610 F. Supp. 612 (S.D.N.Y. 1985). In this case, Fullback’s cartoon robot is not a portrait or a picture because Plaintiff’s image is not instantly recognizable in the cartoon robot. The cartoon simply possesses similar traits to those of the
The second approach to copyright is the democratic approach. All works of art are ideas built on a foundation of other ideas. The democratic approach advocates that intellectual property belongs to the society and should be available for the general good of the public. If the particular usage is intended to derive financial benefit or any other business-related benefits, it is considered inappropriate usage. If the utilization of factual work were more usable than the use of someone’s creative work, then that would not be fair use. There is no specified edge to the amount of quoted work that can be called “fair use.” The courts exercise common sense to determine if it was too much. If the utilization of the material created market or stirred a competition, and if the fair use diminishes demand for the original product, it is not considered as appropriate use (Crews, 1993).
It is common in today's media-driven society to reach into the past for inspiration and ideas. A trend has developed where original works are transformed into other mediums. For example: books are turned into movies and/or plays, movies are turned into weekly sitcoms, and cartoons will spawn empires (Disney). These things happen so often that an audience rarely stops to question the level of authenticity that remains after these conversions. Perhaps it is only when a project is not well received that people begin to think of the difficulties involved with changing a work's genre. Using Gulliver's Travels as an example, discrepancies and additions in the movie can be
Copyright protection extends to expressions and not to ideas . Originality is the threshold standard of requirement of copyright. The case Walter v Lane  AC 539 expounded the three essential elements (labour, skill and judgment ) of originality. The court adapted to sweat of brow test with no element of creativity require to make the work original. Copyright can be granted if a work is created through the effort of an individual despite the work containing statement of facts and no creative input by an author.
Many infringement claims involve simple cases of copyright infringement where the copying is obvious. Others, however, are more difficult to resolve because copyright protection is not limited to exact copying. It is inevitable that creative and commercial works will take inspiration from the culture at large, and it is often challenging to determine when this "inspiration" has crossed the line into infringement. There also may be a question of whether the allegedly infringed work is even protected by copyright. Unprotected works may include, for example, compilations of facts that lack the requisite creativity to be covered by copyright, or those works that are in the public domain because the copyright term expired.
of this fictional characters and portray them often. Or here is another example, after watching the