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“We have basically never entered the area of art and literature on the issue of moral, intellectual property rights,” said House of Cinema’s Managing Director

“We have basically never entered the area of art and literature on the issue of moral, intellectual property rights,” said House of Cinema’s Managing Director.

According to House of Cinema’s Managing Director, one of the major problems of our country in the field of cinema is the issue of moral, intellectual property rights, and it is now more pronounced than ever, ISNA reports.

In an interview with the ISNA reporter on the occasion of the World Intellectual Property Day, Mohammad Mehdi Asgarpour referred to the convention establishing the World Intellectual Property Organization which entered into force in 1970, saying: “Here in Iran, we have accepted the industrial part, which is completely understandable, but we have basically never entered the area of art and literature.”

He further added: “In the past the issue did not raise much dispute. The production volume was not that large, and we didn’t anticipate a noticeable presence in the world market. But today, this is a deficiency in the setting of our international relations and also in the domestic area.”

Pointing out that the latest Iranian legal document protecting the rights of writers and composers dates back to 1969, Asgarpour maintained: “Since then, there has never been a review on the legal articles, and it has never been updated, despite the fact that the issues of today’s cinema should be considered in it.”

House of Cinema’s Managing Director also added: “There are legal definitions in the field of IT. They were ratified by our Majlis some time ago, and so now we have legal documents on IT property. Anyway, there is a trade law in such a young area as IT, but cinema, with more than a hundred years of history in Iran, still lacks such legal support.”

Referring to the draft which was presented to the Iranian President last February (with a copy presented to the director of Majlis’s cultural commission, Asgarpour explained: “The draft is consisted of several sections, one of which is titled ‘Protecting the material and moral rights pertaining cinematic works’. This section has 29 articles which define and protect the material and moral property rights for cinematic works.”

He further remarked: “House of Cinema has been a member of International Federation of Film Producers Association (FIAPF) for the past few years. FIAPF’s general assembly is held during festivals such as Berlin and Cannes. House of Cinema’s representative will attend this year’s general assembly, which will be held at the Cannes Film Festival.”

Asgarpour mentioned that the House of Cinema intends to be appointed as an ISAN registration agency in Iran, adding: “ISAN is a sort of ISPN for visual products, which applies to cinema and TV. FIAPF is one of the founders of ISAN, and as a member of FIAPF, we want to get the agency so that we can organize the matters in this field.”

He maintained: “Our colleagues in cinema has been working on this issue for a few years now. Some of the problems we are facing in the field of cinema come from the violation of property rights. An obvious example of this problem is the distribution of cinematic products in the black market. Other problems concern authors’ rights in auditing areas. At any rate, when we look at the problems we have had in the past few years more closely, it is evident that a major part of them are rooted in property rights.”

House of Cinema’s Managing Director concluded: “It is the World Intellectual Property Day and I think it’s a good opportunity for us to follow up the issue in different fields of cinema, and hope to accomplish very good results.


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