Thursday, July 7, 2011

OZ Free?

L. Frank Baum wrote "The Wonderful Wizard of Oz" in 1900 and have officially fallen into the public domain. MGM still however holds the rights to the ruby red slippers which are their creation - The question of a legal debate has brewed over Oz related merchandise and depiction of the characters based on the script.

Aaron Moss, Greenberg Glusker litigation chairman, says: "The court's statement that the film copyrights cover 'all visual depictions' of the characters recognizes that there is often a quintessential version of a literary character that exists in the public's mind as a result of a popular film adaption. Any filmmaker that wants to create a new version of a literary work -- even one in the public domain -- needs to be careful not to use copyrightable elements of characters that first appear in protected motion picture versions of the works. Of course, when it comes to characters depicted by live actors, this may be easier said than done."

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