In the world of foreign films, sometimes copyright can get lost in the translation. We’re going to take a look at the phenomena of foreign films and the often meager, other times non-existent following of copyright law. We will examine what happens when filmmakers borrow the plot, the music, and sometimes actual footage from Hollywood blockbusters to help create their own movies.
However, even the most obvious rip-off may actually be fine in the eyes of the law. How can you tell? What is a copyright holder to do? What is someone who wants to release these inspired classics in the US supposed to do? What is a judge hearing a case dealing with these problems to do? Can these issues be solved by revising copyright statutes?
On March 9th from 4 to 6 PM in Room 371, be prepared to venture into the murky depths of cult cinema—from Nigerian Titanic to Turkish Star Wars–as Seton Hall Law takes a look at the often bizarre world of copyright in foreign films that will have you asking, “Haven’t I seen that before?”
We’re going to take a trip around the world to look at how copyright sometimes takes a vacation of its own with local productions.
Here are just some of the exotic ports of call we’re going to visit.
We’re going to Italy where a US box office hit was a license to make your own version and see The Last Shark, which to this day has a permanent injunction. Take a tour of Mexico and Egypt to see their local and highly unauthorized adaptations of Abbot and Costello Meet Frankenstein and make sure to stop over in Turkey to see Turkish Rambo, Turkish Star Wars, and even Turkish Death Wish. Stop over in Indonesia to see Lady Terminator. Russia remade Commando scene-for-scene in 2008, so we have to stop by.
Take a trip to Nigeria, but do remember to pick your jaw up off the ground after seeing Nigerian Titanic and groove to tons of Nigerian Celine Dion. Once you’re done recovering your lunch, we’ll go to Hong Kong and Taiwan to see ninjas train to music from Rambo: First Blood Part II and see villains enter to the themes of James Bond and Darth Vader.
Then we’re going to stop off in Turkey and with Bruno Mattei to see when you need special effects footage, you don’t need to spend money to make your own: just splice it in from Star Wars, Rambo, or The Hunt for Red October and dub it over!
Ladies and Gentlemen of Seton Hall (and anyone else who wants to join the fun), get ready from one hell of a ride through the land of copyright and foreign films…but do make some extra room for Rambu; he loves to have a window seat.