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image Right

Droit à l’image

Small shed on the right in the image

This week, I would like to make the point on a legal aspect that relates to absolutely all those who want to make a film and learn the cinema. The Right image is a question that often comes up : do I have to apply or sign an authorization to people who spend in the field of my camera ?

If you want to make a film what it is, you will be sooner or later confronted with this problem. So we will this week make a full point on the image rights of the people.

The right image what is it ?

Every citizen has the right to use his image as he sees fit. Because of this, he may accept or refuse to be photographed, recorded by any process known or unknown to this day. Case law says : “Every person has a right to his or her image and the use that is made of, an exclusive right “.

Really, what does it mean ?

This means that you can use the image filmed or photographed if the person has given his agreement, but in any case we do not become owners of the right in the image.

It therefore requires the agreement of each person filmed, whether it be in a private place or public, whether a single person or embedded in a group.

I hear you from here : Yes, but if I take a photo in the street and that there are people in the field, that is what I am doing ?

You can film or photograph people in the street without asking permission provided that the photo or the video is not focused on them. Imagine, you’re a tourist, and a monument you like, you want to photograph or shoot video, and unfortunately a man is there. You should obviously not ask for permission because it is the monument as you are shooting and not him. Here, we are talking about movies, video and photos in the private.

In addition, the photos that you do in your private life are not made to be distributed outside your private circle, so no worries ;o)

But how do the professional photographers in the events or the gatherings ? They can’t ask every person permission ?!

And you’re right. For public events or events in the news, a photo or a video may be published or distributed without the agreement of the participants, but not to exceed the limits of the right to information.

Yes, but for my film ?

Of course, it doesn’t work like this for a movie. Let’s say you’re shooting in a park. A person spends in the field, she does not stop and comes out of the field. In a first time you can say : “super, a contained in the eye ! “. You continue your shoot, you edit the movie and you stream.

Lack of bowl, this person sees the film, acknowledges that it and there…. It is the drama. She does not want to appear in your movie, nothing to do ! You will therefore be obliged to return to the assembly and take a decision “may be less well” but without this person. It could even ask for damages !

Of course, this doesn’t happen every day, but it is better to be wary. If a passer-by is filmed so that it would not have had to, made a sign to an assistant (or a buddy) to go to him and ask for his permission. In general, it will not make history and you, you will be covered.

Always carry a few photocopies of permissions from image rights pre-filled and ready to be signed.

The permission that you give should be very clear on the broadcast and the media on which the image of the passerby can be used. In this way, il will not be able to say that he has not been duly informed about the possible use of his image.

But be careful, as I mentioned above with the case law, it remains the owner of its image, that is to say that it has given you the right to use it for this project and nothing else. Any use outside of the agreement that it has given you is impossible, on pain of fines and prosecution.

One last thing. You can not work for the image of the passer-by to make it ridiculous, for example. Today, with software, touch-ups are easy and within the reach of almost all. But the person you gave permission for an image precisely, you can’t transform it.

And if the passer-by is a minor ?

If the child is capable of discernment (that is to say, it is capable of understanding the situation) its authorisation is mandatory. But, in all cases, you must ask the permission of the parents.

If you want to article of the law, which speaks of the right to the image, you will not find it because there is no law to itself. The right image is part of article 9 of the code civil concerning the respect for private life.

In contrast, there was an article in the penal code that provides for 1 year of prison and 45.000 euros of fine in case of infringement of the privacy of others. That is to say : to capture, record or transmit, without the consent of its author, images, or words spoken in confidence or where the act was done at the seen and knew of the interested parties.

This right to the image is valid for your actors. Normally, during the signing of their contract, or if there is no contract, when the signing of the commitment, you need to add a section on the use of his image.

We are clear ! The right image is valid for all projects. If you make a movie, even between friends, and that one of them wants to release the film without the consent of all the participants, it will expose itself to potential problems.

I always try to be as clear as possible in my explanations but if you have any questions please do not hesitate to leave me a little message.

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Soon,

Tom Weil

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