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Re: New LotR-based movie: The Hunt for Gollum

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  • ccampboyle
    (de-lurking) If you check their website more carefully, you ll see this is not feature-length; it s a 30 minute short. Cathy Boyle ... Judging from the brief
    Message 1 of 19 , Sep 24, 2008
      (de-lurking)

      If you check their website more carefully, you'll see this is not
      feature-length; it's a 30 minute short.

      Cathy Boyle

      --- In mythsoc@yahoogroups.com, David Bratman <dbratman@...> wrote:
      Judging from the brief glimpses of acting we get, this film will
      consist of two hours of Aragorn wandering tediously through the woods,
      looking as if he's about to say, "Be vewy quiet! I'm hunting wabbits!"
      >
    • David Bratman
      I m sorry; my eyes glazed over from the clips. Concern for continued personal health caused me to stop there.
      Message 2 of 19 , Sep 24, 2008
        I'm sorry; my eyes glazed over from the clips. Concern for continued personal health caused me to stop there.

        -----Original Message-----
        >From: ccampboyle <ccampboyle@...>
        >Sent: Sep 24, 2008 12:19 PM
        >To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com
        >Subject: [mythsoc] Re: New LotR-based movie: The Hunt for Gollum
        >
        >(de-lurking)
        >
        >If you check their website more carefully, you'll see this is not
        >feature-length; it's a 30 minute short.
        >
        >Cathy Boyle
        >
        >--- In mythsoc@yahoogroups.com, David Bratman <dbratman@...> wrote:
        > Judging from the brief glimpses of acting we get, this film will
        >consist of two hours of Aragorn wandering tediously through the woods,
        >looking as if he's about to say, "Be vewy quiet! I'm hunting wabbits!"
      • Michael Cunningham
        I have been in touch with the two main producers of this project, primarily as a fan and because this independent has been receiving some very positive
        Message 3 of 19 , Sep 24, 2008
          I have been in touch with the two main producers of this project, primarily
          as a fan and because this independent has been receiving some very positive
          coverage in several genre-related magazines. Naively or otherwise I thought
          this to be a number of Tolkien aficionados with a cinematic and stage
          background (and therefore some knowledge of copyright issues) expressing
          their appreciation for the professor's works and, to a degree, Jackson's
          cinematic interpretation of such. The producers are aware of these concerns
          re copyright but raised the issue of the 'fan film' which may inhabit its
          own genre and as such not fall under the legal remit of a large scale,
          widely distributed, money making enterprise.

          It's certainly not going to win any Oscars (or praise, it seems) but in
          conversation with those involved the over-riding factor is that they are
          purely fans and the feature is a labour of love and affection for a masterly
          work that fires a creative spark in many of the folk who explore the world
          between its pages.

          I've pasted the response from the producers who sought to address the
          copyright issue.

          Michael

          -----
          I appreciate your editor's concern and he might be right. We haven't heard
          anything from The Tolkien Estate but I can't see that we pose them any
          serious threat. Hopefully we're helping to keep Tolkien's work alive. Anyway
          this is question we get asked a lot and it's very important to make clear
          that we feel there isn't a serious issue here. Let me explain why. The film
          is non-profit and we're just a bunch of Tolkien fans making this in our
          spare time as a labour of love. Here is an FAQ that explains more. It's also
          worth noting that since many Star Wars "fan films" have been made and widely
          publicised, the fan film has become recognised internationally as a genre in
          itself.

          How are you managing to make this with characters created by Tolkien when
          the intellectual property rights are held elsewhere?
          A very fair point. The answer is that we are a non-commercial film club and
          the project is entirely non-profit. We certainly do not intend to breach
          legal copyright and if we were to sell the finished film or anything related
          to it then this would indeed be illegal. However this project is non-profit
          and any videos and media generated will always be available freely and
          openly over the internet. Nobody is or ever will be profiting financially
          from this project. No products are being made or sold. The project is funded
          by the fans who are taking part in it, a group of individuals collaborating
          for fun. We're working on this project based on Lord of the Rings because we
          love the material and as a way to showcase our technical film making skills.
          If the copyright owners are concerned, then legally speaking we plead that
          we are only a bunch of Tolkien fans practicing our film-making skills and
          documenting the results online.

          ------------
        • Croft, Janet B.
          Being a non-profit doesn’t automatically give you free reign to do as you please with other folks’ copyrighted material, which is how they appear to be
          Message 4 of 19 , Sep 24, 2008
            Being a non-profit doesn’t automatically give you free reign to do as you please with other folks’ copyrighted material, which is how they appear to be approaching this project. However, it can have weight in a Four Factors of Fair Use analysis, which is what they should sit down and do before the Estate or Saul Zantz or New Line takes notice of them. They should at least become more familiar with the vocabulary of fair use, and not rely solely on being non-profit to protect themselves.

            Janet Brennan Croft

            From: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com [mailto:mythsoc@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Michael Cunningham
            Sent: Wednesday, September 24, 2008 12:19 PM
            To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com
            Subject: Re: [mythsoc] Re: New LotR-based movie: The Hunt for Gollum


            I have been in touch with the two main producers of this project, primarily
            as a fan and because this independent has been receiving some very positive
            coverage in several genre-related magazines. Naively or otherwise I thought
            this to be a number of Tolkien aficionados with a cinematic and stage
            background (and therefore some knowledge of copyright issues) expressing
            their appreciation for the professor's works and, to a degree, Jackson's
            cinematic interpretation of such. The producers are aware of these concerns
            re copyright but raised the issue of the 'fan film' which may inhabit its
            own genre and as such not fall under the legal remit of a large scale,
            widely distributed, money making enterprise.

            It's certainly not going to win any Oscars (or praise, it seems) but in
            conversation with those involved the over-riding factor is that they are
            purely fans and the feature is a labour of love and affection for a masterly
            work that fires a creative spark in many of the folk who explore the world
            between its pages.

            I've pasted the response from the producers who sought to address the
            copyright issue.

            Michael

            -----
            I appreciate your editor's concern and he might be right. We haven't heard
            anything from The Tolkien Estate but I can't see that we pose them any
            serious threat. Hopefully we're helping to keep Tolkien's work alive. Anyway
            this is question we get asked a lot and it's very important to make clear
            that we feel there isn't a serious issue here. Let me explain why. The film
            is non-profit and we're just a bunch of Tolkien fans making this in our
            spare time as a labour of love. Here is an FAQ that explains more. It's also
            worth noting that since many Star Wars "fan films" have been made and widely
            publicised, the fan film has become recognised internationally as a genre in
            itself.

            How are you managing to make this with characters created by Tolkien when
            the intellectual property rights are held elsewhere?
            A very fair point. The answer is that we are a non-commercial film club and
            the project is entirely non-profit. We certainly do not intend to breach
            legal copyright and if we were to sell the finished film or anything related
            to it then this would indeed be illegal. However this project is non-profit
            and any videos and media generated will always be available freely and
            openly over the internet. Nobody is or ever will be profiting financially
            from this project. No products are being made or sold. The project is funded
            by the fans who are taking part in it, a group of individuals collaborating
            for fun. We're working on this project based on Lord of the Rings because we
            love the material and as a way to showcase our technical film making skills.
            If the copyright owners are concerned, then legally speaking we plead that
            we are only a bunch of Tolkien fans practicing our film-making skills and
            documenting the results online.

            ------------



            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          • Steven Sams
            Where would the bridge film material come from again? What stories? Thanks, Steven [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            Message 5 of 19 , Sep 24, 2008
              Where would the bridge film material come from again? What stories?



              Thanks,



              Steven









              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            • Michael Cunningham
              Possibly they should have been mindful of the Damnatus outcome. Intellectual property issues are rarely black and white and may see this project slip into the
              Message 6 of 19 , Sep 24, 2008
                Possibly they should have been mindful of the Damnatus outcome. Intellectual property issues are rarely black and white and may see this project slip into the Dead Marshes.

                Michael


                ----- Original Message -----
                From: Croft, Janet B.
                To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com
                Sent: Wednesday, September 24, 2008 6:36 PM
                Subject: RE: [mythsoc] Re: New LotR-based movie: The Hunt for Gollum


                Being a non-profit doesn’t automatically give you free reign to do as you please with other folks’ copyrighted material, which is how they appear to be approaching this project. However, it can have weight in a Four Factors of Fair Use analysis, which is what they should sit down and do before the Estate or Saul Zantz or New Line takes notice of them. They should at least become more familiar with the vocabulary of fair use, and not rely solely on being non-profit to protect themselves.

                Janet Brennan Croft

                From: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com [mailto:mythsoc@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Michael Cunningham
                Sent: Wednesday, September 24, 2008 12:19 PM
                To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com
                Subject: Re: [mythsoc] Re: New LotR-based movie: The Hunt for Gollum


                I have been in touch with the two main producers of this project, primarily
                as a fan and because this independent has been receiving some very positive
                coverage in several genre-related magazines. Naively or otherwise I thought
                this to be a number of Tolkien aficionados with a cinematic and stage
                background (and therefore some knowledge of copyright issues) expressing
                their appreciation for the professor's works and, to a degree, Jackson's
                cinematic interpretation of such. The producers are aware of these concerns
                re copyright but raised the issue of the 'fan film' which may inhabit its
                own genre and as such not fall under the legal remit of a large scale,
                widely distributed, money making enterprise.

                It's certainly not going to win any Oscars (or praise, it seems) but in
                conversation with those involved the over-riding factor is that they are
                purely fans and the feature is a labour of love and affection for a masterly
                work that fires a creative spark in many of the folk who explore the world
                between its pages.

                I've pasted the response from the producers who sought to address the
                copyright issue.

                Michael

                -----
                I appreciate your editor's concern and he might be right. We haven't heard
                anything from The Tolkien Estate but I can't see that we pose them any
                serious threat. Hopefully we're helping to keep Tolkien's work alive. Anyway
                this is question we get asked a lot and it's very important to make clear
                that we feel there isn't a serious issue here. Let me explain why. The film
                is non-profit and we're just a bunch of Tolkien fans making this in our
                spare time as a labour of love. Here is an FAQ that explains more. It's also
                worth noting that since many Star Wars "fan films" have been made and widely
                publicised, the fan film has become recognised internationally as a genre in
                itself.

                How are you managing to make this with characters created by Tolkien when
                the intellectual property rights are held elsewhere?
                A very fair point. The answer is that we are a non-commercial film club and
                the project is entirely non-profit. We certainly do not intend to breach
                legal copyright and if we were to sell the finished film or anything related
                to it then this would indeed be illegal. However this project is non-profit
                and any videos and media generated will always be available freely and
                openly over the internet. Nobody is or ever will be profiting financially
                from this project. No products are being made or sold. The project is funded
                by the fans who are taking part in it, a group of individuals collaborating
                for fun. We're working on this project based on Lord of the Rings because we
                love the material and as a way to showcase our technical film making skills.
                If the copyright owners are concerned, then legally speaking we plead that
                we are only a bunch of Tolkien fans practicing our film-making skills and
                documenting the results online.

                ------------


                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]






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                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              • Sarah Beach
                The problem with the filmmakers citing the STAR WARS fanfilms as precedent is that Lucasfilm actually ALLOWS them to be made. Heck, Lucasfilm even sponsors a
                Message 7 of 19 , Sep 24, 2008
                  The problem with the filmmakers citing the STAR WARS fanfilms as
                  precedent is that Lucasfilm actually ALLOWS them to be made. Heck,
                  Lucasfilm even sponsors a Star Wars fanfic film (short) award at the
                  San Diego ComicCon each year. So it is NOT a good example of "Well,
                  if they can do it, so can we in this other property's playground."

                  Alas, I think the filmmakers, though they may be "pure-hearted", are
                  a bit naive about the possible ramifications.

                  I do hope that if something does get stirred up about it all, they
                  come through unscathed.

                  --- In mythsoc@yahoogroups.com, "Michael Cunningham" <vargeisa@...>
                  wrote:
                  >
                  > I have been in touch with the two main producers of this project,
                  primarily
                  > as a fan and because this independent has been receiving some very
                  positive
                  > coverage in several genre-related magazines. Naively or otherwise I
                  thought
                  > this to be a number of Tolkien aficionados with a cinematic and
                  stage
                  > background (and therefore some knowledge of copyright issues)
                  expressing
                  > their appreciation for the professor's works and, to a degree,
                  Jackson's
                  > cinematic interpretation of such. The producers are aware of these
                  concerns
                  > re copyright but raised the issue of the 'fan film' which may
                  inhabit its
                  > own genre and as such not fall under the legal remit of a large
                  scale,
                  > widely distributed, money making enterprise.
                  >
                  > It's certainly not going to win any Oscars (or praise, it seems)
                  but in
                  > conversation with those involved the over-riding factor is that
                  they are
                  > purely fans and the feature is a labour of love and affection for a
                  masterly
                  > work that fires a creative spark in many of the folk who explore
                  the world
                  > between its pages.
                  >
                  > I've pasted the response from the producers who sought to address
                  the
                  > copyright issue.
                  >
                  > Michael
                  >
                  > -----
                  > I appreciate your editor's concern and he might be right. We
                  haven't heard
                  > anything from The Tolkien Estate but I can't see that we pose them
                  any
                  > serious threat. Hopefully we're helping to keep Tolkien's work
                  alive. Anyway
                  > this is question we get asked a lot and it's very important to make
                  clear
                  > that we feel there isn't a serious issue here. Let me explain why.
                  The film
                  > is non-profit and we're just a bunch of Tolkien fans making this in
                  our
                  > spare time as a labour of love. Here is an FAQ that explains more.
                  It's also
                  > worth noting that since many Star Wars "fan films" have been made
                  and widely
                  > publicised, the fan film has become recognised internationally as a
                  genre in
                  > itself.
                  >
                  > How are you managing to make this with characters created by
                  Tolkien when
                  > the intellectual property rights are held elsewhere?
                  > A very fair point. The answer is that we are a non-commercial film
                  club and
                  > the project is entirely non-profit. We certainly do not intend to
                  breach
                  > legal copyright and if we were to sell the finished film or
                  anything related
                  > to it then this would indeed be illegal. However this project is
                  non-profit
                  > and any videos and media generated will always be available freely
                  and
                  > openly over the internet. Nobody is or ever will be profiting
                  financially
                  > from this project. No products are being made or sold. The project
                  is funded
                  > by the fans who are taking part in it, a group of individuals
                  collaborating
                  > for fun. We're working on this project based on Lord of the Rings
                  because we
                  > love the material and as a way to showcase our technical film
                  making skills.
                  > If the copyright owners are concerned, then legally speaking we
                  plead that
                  > we are only a bunch of Tolkien fans practicing our film-making
                  skills and
                  > documenting the results online.
                  >
                  > ------------
                  >
                • David Bratman
                  ... If they think this, they have mistaken probably too small to be worth suing for legally immune from being sued. They are also fantastically kidding
                  Message 8 of 19 , Sep 24, 2008
                    >From: Michael Cunningham <vargeisa@...> wrote:

                    >The producers are aware of these concerns
                    >re copyright but raised the issue of the 'fan film' which may inhabit its
                    >own genre and as such not fall under the legal remit of a large scale,
                    >widely distributed, money making enterprise.

                    If they think this, they have mistaken "probably too small to be worth suing" for "legally immune from being sued." They are also fantastically kidding themselves if they don't realize that posting something on the open Web is not a synonym for "wide distribution."

                    And you quote them:

                    >We haven't heard
                    >anything from The Tolkien Estate but I can't see that we pose them any
                    >serious threat. Hopefully we're helping to keep Tolkien's work alive.

                    This is amazingly arrogant. The Tolkien Estate and their legal licensees get to decide what's to be released to keep Tolkien's work alive. Fan film makers don't get to decide that.


                    >The answer is that we are a non-commercial film club and
                    >the project is entirely non-profit. We certainly do not intend to breach
                    >legal copyright and if we were to sell the finished film or anything related
                    >to it then this would indeed be illegal. However this project is non-profit
                    >and any videos and media generated will always be available freely and
                    >openly over the internet.

                    This is so inaccurate it's not even funny. Disavowing any intention of making a profit is not a "break copyright free" card.

                    >If the copyright owners are concerned, then legally speaking we plead that
                    >we are only a bunch of Tolkien fans practicing our film-making skills and
                    >documenting the results online.

                    Doing whatever you like with Tolkien's characters privately, for your own amusement, is one thing. Documenting it online is quite another. If that's really their intent, they should make up their own Tolkienesque story and film that. If they didn't do that because nobody would watch it, that only proves how much they're piggybacking on Tolkien's fame. It might seen, or even be, silly to worry that this little film could harm Tolkien's reputation and future earnings, but again: they don't get to decide that.
                  • John D Rateliff
                    ... Thanks for posting the link, Ellen. News to me that any such project was in the works, much less that it was nearing completion. As for whether they can
                    Message 9 of 19 , Sep 24, 2008
                      On Sep 23, 2008, at 4:58 AM, Ellen wrote:
                      > My question is this: can the filmmakers get away with blatantly
                      > using Tolkien's world and characters in a movie?

                      Thanks for posting the link, Ellen. News to me that any such project
                      was in the works, much less that it was nearing completion.
                      As for whether they can get away with this, I wdn't bet on it.
                      It's one thing to post a piece of fan fiction; the Estate might be
                      willing to let that pass. But a film is something else, and Tolkien
                      Enterprises is famous for bringing the hammer down on anything that
                      poaches on their turf. Nor are major studios like New Line inclined
                      to turn a blind eye to competition in any shape or form. I think
                      they've probably taken the Lovecraft independent film phenomenon as a
                      model, not taking into account that Lovecraft's work is out of
                      copyright. Then too, the $30 donation in return for a cd somewhat
                      undercuts the 'not-for-profit' claim.
                      And wasn't there someone else a while back working on a
                      Tolkienesque film?

                      Jason Fisher <visualweasel@...> wrote:
                      > Actually, the visuals in the trailer are quite impressive. As is
                      > the music . . . Though I will say the clips from the soundtrack
                      > sound *strikingly* like Howard Shore!

                      It was pretty clear that their goal was to make their piece seem as
                      much like Jackson as possible, right down to the sweep across snow-
                      covered mountains. Hence, the Shore-like music (which I thought they
                      did a better job on with the first clip than the second). I was
                      impressed by how beautiful the natural settings were; someone in the
                      project has a good eye for cinematography.


                      David Bratman wrote:
                      > Have you noticed how nearly all fan-art depictions of LOTR
                      > characters now look like Jackson's actors, whether the artist meant
                      > to depict them or not?

                      No, I hadn't, but that very issue (film-inspired art) is being
                      debated in the latest AMON HEN (#213).


                      On Sep 24, 2008, at 11:20 AM, Steven Sams wrote:
                      > Where would the bridge film material come from again? What stories?


                      Presumably from the Appendices. I'm sure they'd love to use material
                      from UNFINISHED TALES, but they'd have to negotiate a separate
                      license from the Estate to do that (unlikely, I shd think).

                      On Sep 24, 2008, at 11:25 AM, Michael Cunningham wrote:
                      > Possibly they should have been mindful of the Damnatus outcome.

                      Ouch!. I'd forgotten that one. Good example.

                      On Sep 24, 2008, at 9:19 AM, ccampboyle wrote:
                      > If you check their website more carefully, you'll see this is not
                      > feature-length; it's a 30 minute short.


                      I'd missed the detail of thirty minutes, but they do refer to it
                      several times as a short, so it's definitely not a full-length movie.


                      On Sep 24, 2008, at 9:33 AM, David Bratman wrote:
                      > I'm sorry; my eyes glazed over from the clips. Concern for
                      > continued personal health caused me to stop there.


                      Sorry to hear it; get well soon.

                      --John R.
                    • WendellWag@aol.com
                      There s really no point in us discussing this. They re violating copyright law, but it s not our job to enforce the law. Somebody here notify the Tolkien
                      Message 10 of 19 , Sep 24, 2008
                        There's really no point in us discussing this. They're violating copyright
                        law, but it's not our job to enforce the law. Somebody here notify the
                        Tolkien estate about this website. The estate will decide how to proceed against
                        these people. Our discussing this accomplishes nothing.

                        Wendell Wagner



                        **************Looking for simple solutions to your real-life financial
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                        calculators. (http://www.walletpop.com/?NCID=emlcntuswall00000001)


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                      • aveeris523@aol.com
                        If by the bridge film you mean the connection between The Hobbit and LOTR , the essay The Quest of Erebor in Unfinished Tales might be a good start. Steve
                        Message 11 of 19 , Sep 24, 2008
                          If by the "bridge film" you mean the connection between The Hobbit and LOTR ,
                          the essay "The Quest of Erebor" in Unfinished Tales might be a good start.
                          Steve Gaddis


                          **************
                          Looking for simple solutions to your real-life
                          financial challenges? Check out WalletPop for the latest news and information,
                          tips and calculators.
                          (http://www.walletpop.com/?NCID=emlcntuswall00000001)


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                        • Michael Cunningham
                          Not my intention to linger on this but...another fan film in production was highlighted to me: http://www.bornofhope.com/index.html They have a disclaimer, but
                          Message 12 of 19 , Sep 25, 2008
                            Not my intention to linger on this but...another fan film in production was highlighted to me: http://www.bornofhope.com/index.html

                            They have a disclaimer, but that may be all it is. I suppose one may be looking towards a stated case being published if any legal action is taken to prevent future enterprises. As for me I think I'll just stick to music!

                            Michael


                            ----- Original Message -----
                            From: WendellWag@...
                            To: mythsoc@yahoogroups.com
                            Sent: Thursday, September 25, 2008 4:08 AM
                            Subject: Re: [mythsoc] New LotR-based movie: The Hunt for Gollum


                            There's really no point in us discussing this. They're violating copyright
                            law, but it's not our job to enforce the law. Somebody here notify the
                            Tolkien estate about this website. The estate will decide how to proceed against
                            these people. Our discussing this accomplishes nothing.

                            Wendell Wagner

                            **************Looking for simple solutions to your real-life financial
                            challenges? Check out WalletPop for the latest news and information, tips and
                            calculators. (http://www.walletpop.com/?NCID=emlcntuswall00000001)

                            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]






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                          • William Cloud Hicklin
                            ... The Hobbit and LOTR , ... be a good start. ... Except, Steve, New Line/Time Warner/Zaentz have *no* rights to Unfinished Tales, nor to any other Tolkien
                            Message 13 of 19 , Sep 25, 2008
                              --- In mythsoc@yahoogroups.com, aveeris523@... wrote:
                              >
                              > If by the "bridge film" you mean the connection between
                              The Hobbit and LOTR ,
                              > the essay "The Quest of Erebor" in Unfinished Tales might
                              be a good start.
                              > Steve Gaddis
                              >
                              >

                              Except, Steve, New Line/Time Warner/Zaentz have *no* rights
                              to Unfinished Tales, nor to any other Tolkien writings
                              outside the covers of The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit.
                            Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.