Leonard Nimoy's Son Needs To Crowdfund Money For Spock Documentary… To License Photos And Videos

from the come-on-cbs-and-paramount dept

As you may have heard, Leonard Nimoy’s son Adam Nimoy is working on what sounds like an incredible and touching documentary called “For the Love of Spock” — about both the Star Trek character of Spock and about Leonard Nimoy’s career (for the none of you who don’t already know this, Nimoy played the iconic Mr. Spock in the TV show and movies). It had begun as a documentary just about the character of Spock, but after Leonard Nimoy passed away earlier this year, the focus has expanded to cover his life as well. It sounds really great, but Adam is trying to raise $600,000 on Kickstarter to make it happen. There are a lot of reasonable expenses included in that $600k, but one stood out to me: the need to license images and footage of Nimoy:

It will also enable us to license the hundreds of film clips and still photographs of Mr. Spock as he has appeared on television and in feature films over the last fifty years.

It’s worth noting that part of the thinking behind this was to get the documentary out in time for the 50th anniversary of the original Star Trek. In other words, if anything, this documentary is only going to help draw a lot more attention to the whole Star Trek franchise which can only be good for the rightsholders. In other words, the fact that the rightsholders haven’t stepped up and just granted a free license to Adam Nimoy is ridiculous and short-sighted.

Admittedly, the rights behind Star Trek are a little muddled due to the CBS/Viacom corporate split a decade ago, with each company still owning pieces. But, either way, it seems that both CBS and Viacom/Paramount Pictures should recognize that they stand to benefit greatly from having this documentary. The idea that they can’t sort this out themselves and give Nimoy the photos and clips he needs seems ridiculous.

Supporting this documentary seems like a great idea — and it sounds like much of the money will go towards all of the other important work in putting together an excellent end product. It just seems ridiculous that at least a decent chunk of the money has to be used to pay off CBS and/or Paramount to convince them to let Nimoy make a movie that will only help their own bottom line.

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Companies: cbs, paramount, viacom

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Comments on “Leonard Nimoy's Son Needs To Crowdfund Money For Spock Documentary… To License Photos And Videos”

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Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Is there any way…

Idk but this seems a jeer towards Leonard. Maybe his son only did it to be honest, no were did he say he beat him etc. So idk why he would tell people this was as such unless from spite and hate. Wouldn’t want that type person making a Leonard documentary.
[Sure his father could have possibilty done better things in relation to his son, but He could have also had a much worst father.]
On top that Leonard encouraged so many people to bigger and better things that the article almost seems selfish of Adam

Do NOT Support ADAM.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re:

“Shit can I has 600k to make a movie about my dad?”

If you can convince people to fund your project, yes. Is your father interesting enough for people to invest that money? Once made, would that 600k be recouped by people seeing the resulting film, or would you be asking potential investors to lose their money? I hope the jealousy about the figure being raised hasn’t blinded you to the fact that it’s going to production costs, not into Nimoy Jr’s pockets.

CK20XX (profile) says:

Re: What so ridiculous here

Dude, it’s his freaking dad, and CBS and Paramount are missing a great opportunity for some free promotion. That anyone should have to pay that much for permission is rather unfair too, regardless of how rich one is.

You always make more money and become more successful by being graceful instead of stingy. This is a kindergarten-level lesson.

lfroen (profile) says:

Re: Re: What so ridiculous here

Dude, his freaking dad sold rights for those videos/images while working for CBS and Paramount. There’s nothing unfair here, regardless how rich he is.

Did you already made more money and become more successful that CBS or Paramount? If not, please don’t teach. This is kindergarten level lesson.

CK20XX (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: What so ridiculous here

I really don’t see why you would adopt this view at all. It sounds like you’re advocating double standards for the rich, and if Leonard Nimoy’s son is indeed rich, then I must admit that I find it odd that I’m forced into the position of arguing in favor of the 1% for once.

We are, however, talking about an unusual and special situation here, and if a person refuses to take that into account, he just proves himself to be quite blind.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: What so ridiculous here

“Dude, his freaking dad sold rights for those videos/images while working for CBS and Paramount.”

That’s kind of the thing being criticised here in the context of this project, do keep up.

“There’s nothing unfair here, regardless how rich he is.”

That’s got nothing to do with what’s being criticised here, do keep up.

“Did you already made more money and become more successful that CBS or Paramount?”

Did you? Why is that suddenly the qualifying metric?

MrTroy (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: What so ridiculous here

Dude, his freaking dad sold rights for those videos/images while working for CBS and Paramount. There’s nothing unfair here, regardless how rich he is.

While CBS and Paramount have every legal right to require licensing fees for their footage for the documentary, the article is asking why they wouldn’t hand over rights to the footage for free, in exchange for the timely, grassroots advertising to their franchise? That’s literally the kind of advertising that money can’t buy!

Put another way, this is a business discussion, not a legal one. The stupidos are banking on being paid for their footage, AND the documentary working as advertising for their franchise, apparently discounting the value of any goodwill they might achieve by cooperating more directly.

Rhetorical Question says:

Also ask why Adam Nimoy, surely well enough off to have or borrow $600K, is getting the poor to fund project that may bring him money.

I hope this falls flat and scams the contributors. Trekkism is one of the worst mental afflictions ever, stops development of the critical faculty. I’d outgrown the original series by high school. It’s not science but space opera / fantasy that was convenient to film.

I see my questiion is so obvious was already asked.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Also ask why Adam Nimoy, surely well enough off to have or borrow $600K, is getting the poor to fund project that may bring him money.

Blue, let’s just be honest here, it bothers you that people are successful and innovative, doesn’t it? It also bothers you that others recognize useful things and respect certain people, right?

So for the sake of honesty, just let it all out right now, you wish you could do something worthwhile, right? I mean you can’t, but that’s why you attack everyone else who does, right?

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Also ask why Adam Nimoy, surely well enough off to have or borrow $600K, is getting the poor to fund project that may bring him money.

“the poor”

Citation needed.

“I hope this falls flat and scams the contributors”

Why are you such a small-minded petty man that this is what you hope for, rather than for the project to be successful and deliver exactly what the fans paying for it actually want?

“Trekkism is one of the worst mental afflictions eve”

Ohh… “waaah!!! People like what I don’t like!”. Do continue with your childish ranting on every thread, you provide free entertainment for the adults when they’re not busy discussing real world issues.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

Nimoy was worth over 45 million when he died, so you think his son who most likely got a good chunk of that money needs 600k to make a movie to profit on?

Think you need to have a good look in the mirror, give your head a shake and ask if its worth begging people to pay up so you can make millions more.

Your the negative nancy, ASSHOLE.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re:

“Well it has come out Adam is worth more then 10 million dollars and came into a bunch of money this year.”

If the same thing happened to me, I have some movie-related projects I’d love to work on, especially as having such a windfall would free me from things like a day job that would distract me from making it a reality.

However, if I wanted to seek investors to help me out, would that somehow make me a hypocrite? I don’t think so. Especially not if the results of the crowdfunding campaign helps me communicate the the audience for that project, get valuable feedback, gain marketing information that will help secure distribution later, etc. It’s often not simply about raising $X.

Besides, this argument is genuinely ridiculous whenever it’s raised. It seems to be an emotional reaction to the fact that the public is being asked for funding, as opposed to a more traditional source such as a bank or high value private investors, but one not based in any kind of reality. Most projects are not funded solely from the founder’s own pocket, even if he has enough in there.

“So to say he does not have it is a lie.”

OK… who said that, though? I don’t see anyone here saying it.

I do, however, see people attacking someone for seeking external business funding just because he has some personal wealth, which makes no logical sense if you have any notion about how things are usually funded.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

“his movie”

Yeah, right. I’m not sure why he’s so obsessed with attacking everything this site supports and defending the kinds of movies that only multinational corporations are even attempting to make. But, I can say for sure it’s not because he genuinely has a movie production that would be funded for $100 million if only crowdfunding wasn’t happening.

dogsdreams (profile) says:

CBS/Viacom aren't the only rights holders; not all others rich

A bit of reality from an entertainment lawyer. A lot, if not most, of the rights Adam needs were never owned by CBS/Viacom so they can’t give the rights to him for free or otherwise. Ordinarily, many content items in a production are only licensed to the studio, and the licenses almost always contain a prohibition on the studio re-licensing the content for use in another production. It’s worth noting that Adam doesn’t need their permission to do the documentary, so none of the licensing budget is for that. Also, some, probably many, of the licenses are for content that CBS/Viacom never had anything to do with in the first place, and most likely a good amount of it was created or obtained for purposes of selling to the public or private collecting. It’s doubtful that many, if any, are getting rich, or even making much money at all, from Leonard Nimoy content. Publicity? With very rare exceptions, even the best documentaries (which this could very well be) get very little attention, even on cable (not talking about “reality shows”). Most important, though, can anyone seriously say that the Star Trek franchise needs more publicity?

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