Re: Reframing my question

Jessica Rosner (
Mon, 30 Jul 2001 09:12:43 -0700 (PDT)

Sorry for not responding earlier but I was off watching my beloved CUBS WIN
4 out of Six in Chicago

Now to dispel my reputation as some evil greedy distributor, here is some
good news. The films you want are Public Domain and unless the versions you
have access to are very unusual you DON'T HAVE TO PAY ANYONE to screen them.

ALL FILMS made before 1923 are PD so this should cover the Melies film BUT
many silent films on video including ALL KINO & MILESTONE FILMS are
copyrighted under the "special contents" provision. This means that having
spend a lot of money to put out the best versions we get a copyright on
anything we may have added such as scores, tints and titles. I doubt this is
the case with the Melies films and in most cases you could get around this
by NOT using the music on the print/ or tape. I would just look at what
"version" you have access to

As for the Spencer Williams' films, like most independent films they were
either never copyrighted or if copyrighted not renewed. As they are sound
films it is virtually impossible to add a "special content" and therefor
copyright any particular video ( unless of course some moron colorized it
which does make it eligible for copyright)

While you should pay attention to the version of these films you get,
the films themselves are PD so enjoy

Jessica Rosner
Kino International
333 W 39th St. 503
NY NY 10018

> From: Susan Shaw <> > Reply-To: > Date: Thu, 26 Jul 2001 12:58:05 -0700 (PDT) > To: Multiple recipients of list <> > Subject: Reframing my question > > Dear videolib folks, > > Thanks so much for the info on old movies shot in San Antonio. What I meant > to ask---because these are some we are considering for a film series---was > whether anyone knows the rights-holders for the video and the film (if > indeed the film versions are still available) for the Spencer Williams and > the Gaston Melies titles. > > Excuse the vagueness of my original query--I was so focused on the question > that I forgot to ask it! > > Susan Shaw