Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Stormtrooper Helmet Designer Andrew Ainsworth Wins Battle Against George Lucas

The prop designer who made the first Stormtrooper helmets in the Star Wars films won a copyright battle against George Lucas and can now sell replicas of the originals, according to media reports on Wednesday.

Andrew Ainsworth spent more than $1.15 million and the past five years to battle against Lucas, who created the Star Wars franchise, reported the BBC.

The U.K. Supreme Court rejected a challenge issued by Lucas against Ainsworth to sell the helmet replicas.

The judges in the case ruled that the helmets are considered a prop and are fully functional rather than a sculpted work of art, which means their copyright protection is 15 years from the date and has since expired. Copyright protection for a sculpture is 70 years.

The court also ruled that Lucas’ copyright had been violated in the U.S., but Ainsworth told the BBC that he does not sell his works in the country any more, and does not hold assets in the country.

I am delighted to have won the right to continue to make these replicas from the original tools and moulds,” Ainsworth told the Daily Telegraph newspaper. “I am proud to report that in the English legal system David can prevail against Goliath if his cause is right. If there is a force, then it has been with me these past five years.

The court said that the Star Wars films are considered works of art created by Lucas and his companies, however the helmet was “utilitarian in the sense that it was an element in the process of production of the film,” according to the Guardian newspaper.

- Source

No comments:

Post a Comment