Distributing Trailers

Dan Sherman wrote on 4/15/2014, 10:38 AM
I recently put together a compilation of film trailers for a client.
It was shown at a small event for about 4 hundred viewers at no charge.
Now the company would like share this compilation with others in the elder care industry.
But Fox Searchlight won't allow the use of it's trailer for "Young at Heart"..
I'm surprised that distribution of trailers is limited in any way.
I thought they were to promote films, and the more viewers the better.
I understand this is not the place to seek legal advice, but does anyone else find this odd?



larry-peter wrote on 4/15/2014, 11:45 AM
Not at all. I'm a bit surprised other distributors gave permission without qualifications. Although it is a free advertising venue for them, the big guys are becoming more and more protective of their properties (and many would say rightfully so) because they can't control the context their materials are being viewed in these days. They spent loads of money to ensure the viewer would see exactly what they wanted them to see in a particular viewing venue.

And there may be limitations for particular trailers also. The screens you see that say "this preview acceptable for appropriate audiences" (green band , red band trailers) designate the MPAA rating for the trailer. Maybe this one isn't approved for all audiences.

As a documentary producer, I find it harder than ever to get permissions for use from large entities, even when it falls clearly under "fair-use." Then you have to decide if you want to test the waters and see if they decide you're worth fighting.
ddm wrote on 4/15/2014, 1:12 PM
I worked on a documentary, many years ago about Trailers. It was fascinating. In the old days, the film companies did NOT own their trailers, in fact, many projectionists used to keep the film and were free to use it and SELL it as their own, for many years, too. That surprised me, obviously, the film companies wised up. It was a cool project, we interviewed several big name directors who learned their craft editing trailers for Roger Corman. They had some hilarious stories about cutting trailers, sometimes without ever using a foot of film from the actual movie they were creating the trailer for.
videoITguy wrote on 4/15/2014, 1:13 PM
Film and video is not the ONLY place that these issues of display become one of ironic considerations. Anytime that I may seek the intellectual, or created property of another entity, -even just for recognition --- there has to be a negotiation to get those "distribution" rights into public hands and likness thereof into permissions to do so. The negotiations are up to the two parties and many times there is no negotiation allowed because one party says it will never happen. This is the reality.