Filmmaking / Directing : Character quoting by Bryce Gardner

Bryce Gardner

Character quoting

I have a character in my show that quotes a couple lines of Star Wars. As long as I give where the quote came from in the credits, everything is good. Right?

Beth Fox Heisinger

I think you'd be okay if the phrase you are using has really become part of pop culture, or part of the national lexicon. If your character says jokingly to another character, waving his hand, "These are not the droids you're looking for" everyone would know what that quote is taken from. You wouldn't need to credit Star Wars. That's "fair use." However, depending on what you are doing, it could very well be an issue of fair use. Fair use is often determined by four things: the purpose and character of the use; the nature of the copyrighted work; the amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the entire quoted work; and the effect of the use on the potential market for or value of the quoted work. It may behoove you to double check with legal council, just to be sure. :)

Bryce Gardner

Thanks, Beth. I figured it fell in fair use as well. But I also figured adding the credit is an extra layer of protection. :-)

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