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Do we need a release for this footage?

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Keith GoldsteinDo we need a release for this footage?
by on Oct 16, 2012 at 11:21:14 pm

We are making a music video for a MMA fighter. His people have footage from a match that they want to use in the video. They own the video, and the match was a public event. However, they did not get a release from the opponent. My gut says they need a release from the opponent, but I wanted to ask and see if anyone had any input.

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Mark SuszkoRe: Do we need a release for this footage?
by on Oct 17, 2012 at 2:14:28 pm

Not enough info to know for sure. But I'm thinking the promoter of the event got releases from all the participants and you need to check with them first.

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Jonathan ZieglerRe: Do we need a release for this footage?
by on Oct 17, 2012 at 3:59:42 pm

Insert typical, I'm not a lawyer text... okay, good.

My gut says you will need a release from the location and, at least, the main people featured in the event (ie: fighters, referees, coaches, and/or anyone featured prominently). Won't likely need releases from the audience unless they are featured prominently (edit around those bits to make them less prominent). May also need a property release from the fight location.

Think in terms of big sporting events like NFL. Everyone signs a release: coaches, staff, players, refs, even press. Basically, if anyone CAN be on camera AND they can get a release signed, they do. Its a pile of paperwork, but its worth it.

If you need to get releases, make sure to get the exact date or date ranges (time is helpful, but not necessary) of the event, get them to sign and offer them $1. If you want a good release, do a search in Google for "Getty model release" (and Getty property release)and click the PDF to download. Make the appropriate changes for your business and run it by a lawyer to be sure. Both releases need a witness signature (can be any third party, but NOT you or the other signer) to be valid and at least $1 consideration. In most cases, I'll get away with buying someone lunch as payment and I attach the receipt to the release and it's a legit business expense.

Jonathan Ziegler

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Brent DunnRe: Do we need a release for this footage?
by on Oct 24, 2012 at 3:27:03 pm

Yes, you need a release.

Brent Dunn
Owner / Director / Editor
DunnRight Films
Video Marketing

Sony EX-1,
Canon 5D Mark II
Canon 7D
Mac Pro Tower, Quad Core,
with Final Cut Studio

HP i7 Quad laptop
Adobe CS-5 Production Suite

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