Using samples from movies... what are the licence issues and how to deal with them?
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Old 11-01-2018, 07:16 PM   #1
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Using samples from movies... what are the licence issues and how to deal with them?

Hey guys,

i'm not sure where would be the right place to post this, therefore i'm trying here.

There are lots of producers that use conversations or monologues sampled from movies in their production.
I was wondering if you guys could let me know what the implications are. Some of these productions are signed with popular record labels and some samples are commonly known, so i wonder how they deal with these issues. and i wonder how you would deal with them, if you are not signed and are not backed by a record label.

let me give you some examples:
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how do you get the rights to use samples like that?
do the licences for these samples expire at some point? and are you free to use them after a certain time? (like with patents)


thanks already and lets have a nice discussion!

cheers,
Lennart

Last edited by Sine6; 11-01-2018 at 09:00 PM..

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Old 11-01-2018, 07:48 PM   #2
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Re: Using samples from movies... what are the licence issues and how to deal with the

The easiest and most legal thing to do is stick with stuff that is in the public domain. Otherwise you have to ask the owner for permission; for popular movies that means dealing with giant production companies, which leads me to believe (if you actually got a hold of someone) the answer would either be “no” or you wouldn’t be able to afford it.

Its hard to know what any of these labels did. My understanding, which could be very wrong, is that as long as you aren’t making money off the song with the sample in question, is you would get a cease and disist order and if you followed that order you are unlikely to be prosecuted. I don’t know what the chances of that actually happening are.

Personally, I regularly use uncleared samples in my music, but I’d be really impressed if someone tracked them down to the original source. Either because of obscurity or sound mangling. In the past I’ve also made tunes that I only play live/in a DJ set with uncleared samples.

I understand the mentality behind using something everyone will recognize. You are essentially dropping a meme into your music—which is fine, a lot of my favorite dance stuff from the 90’s uses movie samples like this. I just try to avoid it and am slowly, but surely working up the balls to trying recording some of my own vocals. I just don’t really have practice space as I don’t live alone.

Also, if you just need some soulful house vocal phrases or just some other kind of raw material to work with, you might be able to get someone to record you some material pretty cheaply. I forget the names, but there are a couple online services that connect producers and vocalists now. The prices weren’t outrageous IMO. I know it isn’t really what you asked about.

The last thing I can think of, and again I could be so wrong here, is that a lot of this law actually applies only to the actual recorded material. So if you recorded the dialog yourself or with a friend you would be safe(r).

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Old 11-01-2018, 09:05 PM   #3
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Re: Using samples from movies... what are the licence issues and how to deal with the

hey relic, thanks for your answer....
yes i had pretty much about the same thoughts that you have. i also work with uncleard samples sometimes, but so far, they are not very reconizable. but the thing that i want to do is to create recognizability, and to use the samples, that i know to create certain moods and atmospheres in the original context (the movie) to underline a similar mood in my tracks.
i see, that it probably wont be a problem if you only play them in a set (which is not recorded) or play them live, but if i produce a really good track, i dont want to limit myself to that.

i will try to ask these artists directly, maybe they will let me know what they did.

thanks for your reply, i will update this thread once i get an answer and am still keen to know what you other guys think

(also i fixed the links in the original post! sorry for that)
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Old 11-01-2018, 09:39 PM   #4
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Re: Using samples from movies... what are the licence issues and how to deal with the

Relic is basically on the money about this..use at your own risk. Some artists are signed to labels owned by major studios..or the studios are owned by the company that owns the label they signed to, which basically opens doors for them that might not open so easy for the likes of you or me, without paying a large up-front fee first.

If they're not signed to a major label, then the chances are they just ripped the audio and used it as they wanted to..which is what most of us tend to so, but in doing so, you need to understand the risks, which Relic has already touched on..and which you already know yourself.

The audio from movies is copyrighted and..like it or not..the property of those who hold that copyright..so, worse case is you could end up in court and having to pay a fine..but a cease and desist order is more than likely if you're not making anything from the work in question.

Of course, there's always the angle that if you do get called out on using such audio, then the publicity could work in your favor, too.

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Old 11-01-2018, 10:00 PM   #5
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Re: Using samples from movies... what are the licence issues and how to deal with the

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Always check out the stickies! Sometimes it's already covered

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Old 12-01-2018, 09:52 AM   #6
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Re: Using samples from movies... what are the licence issues and how to deal with the

Let's face it, at the level most of us play, a sample from a movie is not likely to cause any issue at all, if you make it bigger, then your label might be able to clear it up, but even in that case it won't be easy to get the clearance.

Just use whatever you want and worry about it later, chances are nobody will care about what you used.

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Old 12-01-2018, 03:48 PM   #7
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Re: Using samples from movies... what are the licence issues and how to deal with the

Quote:
Originally Posted by Automageddon View Post
Let's face it, at the level most of us play, a sample from a movie is not likely to cause any issue at all, if you make it bigger, then your label might be able to clear it up, but even in that case it won't be easy to get the clearance.

Just use whatever you want and worry about it later, chances are nobody will care about what you used.

^^ truth

Sample and steal like a mad cunt. Then get sued aka free advertisement.
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Old 12-01-2018, 04:31 PM   #8
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Re: Using samples from movies... what are the licence issues and how to deal with the

THIS SO HARD.


just make good tunes.

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Old 12-01-2018, 08:59 PM   #9
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Re: Using samples from movies... what are the licence issues and how to deal with the

If you start making enormous amounts of money selling your music and it has uncleared samples in it, you might be at risk.

If you're not making enormous amounts of money, it will probably never be an issue.

Your call.

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Old 12-01-2018, 09:05 PM   #10
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Re: Using samples from movies... what are the licence issues and how to deal with the

Is infringement art a thing, btw?

If not, someone needs to fuck that hole.
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Old 12-01-2018, 09:21 PM   #11
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Re: Using samples from movies... what are the licence issues and how to deal with the

Quote:
Originally Posted by thom View Post
Is infringement art a thing, btw?

If not, someone needs to fuck that hole.
Plunderphonics / vaporwave, possibly? I think that hole is now just a bloody mass on the side of the road

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Old 12-01-2018, 11:39 PM   #12
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Re: Using samples from movies... what are the licence issues and how to deal with the

Quote:
Originally Posted by thom View Post
Is infringement art a thing, btw?

If not, someone needs to fuck that hole.
Fuck yes it is. Negativland basically pioneered it, but the mantle's been taken up since then.

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Old 15-02-2018, 03:33 PM   #13
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Re: Using samples from movies... what are the licence issues and how to deal with the

Vocals

Some years ago I used sounds from movies. "Fix them up" and no one will recognize.
But now I tend not to. There is a lot of free stuff.
I like to look for some poetry in blogs or whatever. (youtube mostly) and if something good comes out of that. I ask premission to use them.

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Old 15-02-2018, 11:39 PM   #14
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Re: Using samples from movies... what are the licence issues and how to deal with the

I tend to sample movie dialog, I hope one day I'm in a position where I'm getting sued because at least i must of been selling a heap of tracks.

Until then I'll just keep sampling and dream of the day I get sued

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