Jump to content

Using Speeches in your Films?

John W. King

Recommended Posts

Hello, all!


I am curious as to the legalities of using speeches given by individuals in the past.


For instance, I am considering using a speech from Alan Watts, given during some lecture at a university as a voiceover.


Is there any copyright involved with this, or the use of any other speeches?




Link to comment
Share on other sites

There can be a number of aspects, including the written aspect and the performance itself. Are you talking about a short quote (a line) or something longer?

Let's say I were to take the first two minutes or so of this speech:

and place it into my film.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

All presidential speeches are public domain. The feed called the "pool feed" is also public domain. Obviously you can't have 50 network cameras in the oval office when the president makes a speech, it's one camera and everyone gets the same feed.


Now the network that shoots a particular angle of a presidential speech while the president is out on the lawn for example, would have ownership rights over the footage. But the network does not have ownership over the president's image or what he says, that is public domain.


Public figures, including celebrities, do not have the same kind of image protections that private citizens do.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Create New...