Intellectual Property Law

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I created a movie trailer' Pete Seeger and Sloops of the…

Customer Question
I created a movie...

I created a movie trailer ' Pete Seeger and Sloops of the Hudson River ' and placed it on Youtube to express my concept of this documentary I was working on for ten years. also shared this idea with Dan Messina who volunteered to edit my video footage. He and his wife took over and are now doing my project that I introduced to him as their own. Can I copyright my trailer as an expression of the idea ? ... or should a cease and desist letter be sent ? We had a verbal agreement to do this together but he wanted his own thing. Also he had no prior knowladge of Pete Seeger or sloops, thank you, ***** *****

Lawyer's Assistant: What written documentation do you have?

Several emails with Dan Messina, good paper trail and what's written in the trailer

Lawyer's Assistant: Have you talked to a local attorney? Has anything been filed in court?

No , I am starting here

Lawyer's Assistant: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?

That Dan Messina went to Beacon Sloop Club in Sept. 2017 asking for home video of Sloop activities from the 1970s to 80s because he and his wife are doing a video documentary on Pete Seeger and the sloops, almost my trailer tittle word for word

Submitted: 7 months ago.Category: Intellectual Property Law
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Answered in 3 minutes by:
11/16/2017
IP Lawyer: Law Educator, Esq., Lawyer replied 7 months ago
Law Educator, Esq.
Category: Intellectual Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 125,166
Experience: Attorney practicing all aspects of copyright/trademark law
Verified

Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only.

Unfortunately, under copyright law, you cannot copyright an idea or concept. You could copyright a script and you can copyright the trailer itself, but if they took over your project and created their own work and it is just based on your idea, legally you would have no rights to the idea or concept itself. This happens constantly in the movie business and when people pitch ideas if someone takes their idea or concept it is very difficult to prevent them from doing so without written confidentiality and non-disclosure/non-use agreements between the parties to prevent this from occurring.

Please do not forget to leave positive feedback by clicking on the 5 stars at the top of your page, as the experts are not employees of the site and get no credit for spending time with customers unless they leave positive feedback. Thank you.

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Law Educator, Esq.
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Law Educator, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Intellectual Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 125,166
125,166 Satisfied Customers
Experience: Attorney practicing all aspects of copyright/trademark law

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The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).

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