2. Do I need to purchase a public performance movie license?
Plain and simple, if you plan on displaying your movie in a public setting or to the public, then you need a public performance movie license.
You need a movie license regardless of the size of your event, whether or not you charge for your event, or whether you are a commercial or nonprofit entity.
If you are still wondering whether your event will require a public performance license, the Motion Picture Association of America states:
“The Federal Copyright Act (Title 17 of the US Code) governs how copyrighted materials, such as movies, may be used. Neither the rental nor the purchase of a copy of a copyrighted work carries with it the right to publicly exhibit the work. No additional license is required to privately view a movie or other copyrighted work with a few friends and family or in certain narrowly defined face-to-face teaching activities. However, bars, restaurants, private clubs, prisons, lodges, factories, summer camps, public libraries, daycare facilities, parks and recreation departments, churches, and non-classroom use at schools and universities are all examples of situations where a public performance license must be obtained. This legal requirement applies regardless of whether an admission fee is charged, whether the institution or organization is commercial or nonprofit, or whether a federal or state agency is involved.”
So private events with small groups of people on private property will likely not require the license, but public events of any sort will.
Popular applications for movie licensing include recreation centers, parks, libraries, colleges and universities, elementary schools, bus companies, camps, hospitals, resorts, and prisons.
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