ELZABURU Blog - Industrial and Intellectual Property

Tag Archives: Copyright

Film award ceremonies and festivals: much more than winning an award


In the United States the Golden Globes award ceremony was held recently, and on 9 February the Oscars ceremony, organised by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, will take place in Los Angeles. Also coming up in February are the award ceremonies for British cinema, the BAFTA awards, and French cinema, the César awards.

Spain is no exception to this “awards season”. In mid-January the José Mª Forqué awards, organised by EGEDA, celebrated their 25th edition. They are followed by the Feroz awards and, of course, by the Goya awards ceremony organised by Spain’s Academy of Cinematographic Arts and Sciences, which will take place on 25 January.




With such a deluge of awards, doubts inevitably arise as to their importance. The reality is that, essentially, there is no “awards season”, and these activities, including awards, festivals, ceremonies and film markets, take place practically throughout the year for the different facets and specialities of the industry.

This concentration of award ceremonies in the opening months of the year is due principally to the fact that these events are promotional tools for the films that are about to be released or for recent releases. It serves as a means of attracting or focusing the attention of audiences, in a world full of distractions. In some cases, a prominent nomination or award can even provide a second commercial opportunity for a film (or perhaps even a new opportunity for smaller projects that have passed through cinemas with little commercial success).

This has become such an important part of the economic process connected with the production, promotion and exploitation of audiovisual projects, that the Institute of Cinematography and Audiovisual Arts (ICAA), subsidiary to Spain’s Ministry of Culture and various Autonomous Communities of Spain, has specific lines of funding in relation to support for both festival attendees and organisers.

Moreover, it is common for such events and, principally, film festivals (Berlin, Cannes, Toronto, San Sebastian), to be accompanied by parallel activities relating to the industry’s development, such as conventions or working sessions. These activities tend to have frenetic agendas, in order to secure sales, seek funding, participate in debates on future legal texts and in meetings of associations from the industry, hold meetings with the authorities, or simply take the opportunity to establish cooperation networks that may lead to future projects.

Thus, despite the aura of glamour that surrounds any film award or competition, it is important to be aware that behind that aura, and beyond the excitement at receiving an award, there is a thriving industry which in Spain generated ticket sales in excess of 500 million euros last year.


Author: Mabel Klimt

Visit our website: http://www.elzaburu.es/en

Fashion Law. Protection of fashion through copyright (IV)

ELZABURU has had the pleasure of working together with the publisher Thomson-Reuters Aranzadi on Fashion Law, a pioneering work in Spain on the subject of fashion law, which was presented on 16 April.

In these short weekly summaries, the professionals at ELZABURU who participated in the work offer us a brief outline of their contributions:

Protection of fashion through copyright

We cannot resist including in this summary the quote from Balenciaga mentioned at the beginning of the chapter. The Basque couturier remarked that a couturier must be an architect for design, a sculptor for shape, a painter for colour, a musician for harmony, and a philosopher for temperance.

This desire to promote fashion design to the category of work of art also extends to the legal front, in efforts to extend copyright protection to a variety of creations, mostly textile creations, whose natural source of protection is something quite different.

This is not surprising, given that the protection offered by copyright is in many respects more beneficial than that offered by industrial designs, for example. The most obvious advantage is the duration of copyright protection (70 years post mortem auctoris), but there is also the absence of any formal requirements for obtaining protection and the series of moral rights to which the author is entitled.

However, it is not quite so easy. A creation, whatever the artistic field, must possess a specific degree of originality and creativity in order to obtain copyright protection. It is thus a question of determining what constitutes an original creation that is eligible for this type of protection.

This is the most controversial issue in the area of copyright law. There is no definition in either the Copyright Act or the Industrial Design Act that might serve as a basis for determining which creations are covered by copyright and which ones call for other means of protection, such as designs or unfair competition law.

However, based on the most recent case law, it appears to be a question of degree rather than concept. That case law also focuses on the different purposes that designs and copyright are intended to serve, which would imply that the choice of one means of protection or the other would be determined to a certain degree by the extent to which the design is intended for industrial use and the intellectual works are intended to serve an ornamental, decorative or merely aesthetic purpose.

The task of the legal practitioner in this field is therefore to pinpoint the boundary between the originality required of a design (Article 5 of the Industrial Design Act refers to novelty and individual character) and that required for it to qualify as an artistic work.

The reality is that prêt-à-porter fashion is intended for mass production and consumption and therefore the natural source of protection would be that offered by an industrial design, which has a much shorter term of protection and is aimed at fostering, among other things, the smooth functioning of the market and of production and marketing of consumer goods.

Therefore, few creations in the world of fashion can be considered especially creative and afford their creators the privileged status of author of an artistic work. But who would dare to say that Yves Saint Laurent’s famous dress evoking Mondrian’s “Composition with Red Blue and Yellow” is not a work of art?


Author: Patricia Mariscal 

Visit our website: http://www.elzaburu.es/en


Blog entries in the series Fashion Law:

1.Trademark protection in the fashion sector (23.04.2018)

2.Design protection in the fashion sector (30.04.2018)

3.Patent protection in the fashion sector (07.05.2018)

4.Protection of fashion through copyright (21.05.2018)

5. Image rights in the fashion sector (28.05.2018)

6.Fashion Law. Data Fashion (04.06.2018)

7.Counterfeiting in the fashion sector (11.06.2018)

8.Exhaustion of rights in the fashion sector (18.06.2018)

9.Corporate reputation in the fashion sector (25.06.2018)

10. Protection of the commercial imagen of a fashion brand (04.07.2018)

11. Websites, Apps & Social Networks (13.07.2018)

12. Valuation of intangible assets (17.07.2018)

13. Licensing (06.09.2018)



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