May 24, 2002
DREAMWORKS WINS PLAGIARISM SUIT
Dreamworks has prevailed in a copyright infringement lawsuit brought by former Green Beret Keith Idema who claimed the movie AThe Peacemaker@ infringed his novel and screenplay. The infringement claims were dismissed by Judge Audrey Collins in a lengthy 70-page decision which includes a detail analysis of the works and explains why the similarities do not amount to copyright infringement. The similarities included a border-crossing scene and a checkpoint scene, as well as the premise that a nuclear warhead carried in a backpack could destroy much of a city.
Idema v. Dreamworks, Inc., 162 F. Supp.2d 1129, 2001 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 14810 (C.D. Cal. 2001).
UPCOMING UCLA SEMINAR
I will be teaching a UCLA class this summer on Financing Independent Features and Negotiating a Distribution Agreement which is the subject of my next book.
This comprehensive seminar explores how independent films are financed and distributed. Topics include financing via pre-sales, debt and limited partnerships, negotiating tactics, typical contract terms, cross-collateralization and creative accounting. Particular attention is paid to how producers and film makers can protect themselves by watering down warranties, getting added to the E & O policy, using lab access letter to retain possession of their negative, and utilizing termination and arbitration clauses. The seminar includes a handout with a distribution contract, articles, self-defense checklist and other materials.
8.75 hours of MCLE credit available.
UCLA: Public Policy Bldg.Saturday, 10am-5pm,August 10Sunday, 9am-12pm,August 11
To register for the class call UCLA at (310) 825-9971 or visit their website:www.uclaextension.org/entertainmentstudies