Little-known aspect of US copyright law means creators can reclaim their work




The Hollywood Reporter recently ran an article by Eriq Gardner entitled “Real-Life ‘Terminator’: Major Studios Face Sweeping Loss of Iconic ’80s Film Franchise Rights,” which is certainly an attention-demanding headline. Some of the franchise properties referred to in Gardner’s piece are worth – without exaggeration – billions of dollars to the studios.  Money, in copyright-land, has the attribute of making things happen. Long story short, the creators of the original works underlying these now-classic films are making use of a relatively little-known (and little understood) aspect of US copyright law, known as “termination of transfers.” Through this, creators can reclaim…

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