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Author Topic: Disney Film on DVD: Public Domain in Asia - TOTALLY Illegal Elsewhere?  (Read 720 times)


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Song of the South, Disney's 1946 live action/animation classic (Uncle Remus, zip-a-dee-doo-dah, Brer Rabbit) has never been officially released on DVD. The UK VHS versions & Japanese laserdisc releases are the only official ones, as far as I can tell.

I understand that the film is out-of-copyright in Asia - there are versions from Chinese sellers available from eBay Australia which I gather are legitimately produced. I tried to verify the exact legal position for Japan but Japanese copyright law isn't really up my street - or comprehensible in the least.

I have a couple of questions about this if anyone can help:

1. Can anyone in Asia/Japan/China freely copy, alter and distribute this film on DVD?

2. Can they also do the same with associated images? As in reproduction of images for covers/inserts etc?

3. Could such an item be legally sold elsewhere - such as UK/USA? If it were sent from say Japan? Or China?

4. Could a 'used' copy from, say, Japan be legally sold in the UK/USA?

5. Would it be illegal for, say, a UK resident to direct a Japanese resident to send a copy to a USA resident?

Sorry that's five or more questions. I'm really interested in the implications for domestic consumption due to this film being in the public domain only in some jurisdictions.

I'm interested in copyright/trademarks/patents in general and this particular one caught my eye.

It once crossed my mind to attempt to trademark the '' symbol. Has anyone beaten me to it yet?


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