Yoko Ono Seeking to Stop Controversial Lennon Video
Thu, 24 Apr 2008 14:24:34
A rather confusing case over the rights to a controversial John Lennon video will begin at a Boston courthouse next week. The battle involves Lennon's widow, Yoko Ono, and a Massachusetts group of Beatles collectors, World Wide Video, which claims they own nine hours of raw footage—including shots of Lennon smoking pot and writing songs—from the rough period before the band's breakup in 1970.
After spending more than $1 million on legal costs and expenses, World Wide had edited the footage down to a two-hour film called "3 days in the life." Just in time for a private premier at the Berwick Academy in Maine, too, but that was postponed when Ono's lawyers sent a cease and desist order. According to her legal team, Yono owns the copyright to all nine hours. (She purchased the original World Wide tapes from a Florida man that's been named in the company's lawsuit against Ono.)
"The decision that should be made in the case is who in fact does have the copyright," World Wide's lawyer, Joseph Doyle, told Reuters. "We're saying that we legitimately own the copyright to this film."
Ono's Boston-based lawyer, Jonathan Albano, has declined to comment on the case, the preliminary hearing of which happens next Wednesday, April 30.
—The ARTISTdirect Staff