i filmed a basketball dvd with another person. i paid for all of the production, filming, gym rentals, etc. We had an agreement that each would keep the money from the dvds we each separately sold. now, as he has gained more notoriety, he has an agent. the agency is now ordering me to take the dvd off of my website and quit selling it as it involves their client. i feel that since our agreement was first, it should take precedent. is there a legal basis for this? i feel like they are pushing me around with the threat of legal action in order take out some competition. we are both competing for sales, as my sales have increased and he is putting more videos out.
2 Answers from Attorneys
As a Franchise Attorney I can only say this. Your question involves an evaluation of all terms and conditions of the agreement you had with the the other party. It is not possible to even begin to answer without a full evaluation of this agreement. Consult with a good business or franchise attorney in your area for specific advice.
Mr. Franchise - Kevin B. Murphy, B.S., M.B.A., J.D.
Franchise Foundations, a Professional Corporation
First, there are several issue related to copyright authorship, work-made-for-hire agreements, copyright infringement and licensing in your circumstances that depend upon more facts. The author of the film typically has the right to exclude others from commercial use of a copyrightable work. If you are the author then you may have given the other party a license to commercial benefit from your work. The extent of this license is unclear from your facts. However, the agency doesn't seem to have a clear basis for demanding a take-down of this work unless they have relied upon misleading representations from the other party.
I would definitely recommend seeking the assistance of a copyright attorney.