Mickey Mouse’s Impending Copyright Expiration Explained

Mickey Mouse’s copyright is about to expire – here’s an explanation of how it’s expired and how that could affect Disney’s future. In January 2024, the rights to the first story featuring Mickey Mouse will expire. That means nearly 95 years after the release of the first animated short about Mickey Mouse, one of Disney’s most iconic characters will be in the public domain. With the rights to Disney’s most iconic character about to expire, many might think that this will inevitably lead to other creators and the general public being able to use Mickey Mouse in their works. their own in the future. However, this is an oversimplification.

While the excitement surrounding the expiration of Mickey Mouse’s copyright is understandable and may raise questions about the future of Mickey Mouse films for Disney, Disney will not lose all rights and trademarks. his trademark for Mickey Mouse. In fact, Disney will lose Steamboat WillieThe film’s copyright was coming soon, but the issue of copyright protection is more complicated than many Disney viewers thought, as the character Mickey Mouse has appeared in many other films since. Steamboat Willie. Since the first short, Mickey Mouse’s continued growth throughout Disney’s history has complicated its copyright status.

The original Mickey Mouse story will lose its copyright in January 2024

Steamboat Willie This is the first Disney story to feature Mickey Mouse. Released in 1928, Steamboat Willie This is not only one of Disney’s first animated films since the Walt Disney Company, but also the first appearance of Mickey Mouse. The interesting way, Steamboat Willie This is not only the third Disney film to feature Mickey Mouse, but also the first to be released because Walt Disney wanted to make a talking animated film after the success of Mickey Mouse. jazz singer. In reality, Steamboat Willie It was also one of the first cartoons to feature fully synchronized audio, a novelty for Disney at the time.

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With the Disney remake of live-action movies, the issue of copyright of Disney products has become a hot topic in recent times. Under US copyright law, the rights to a character expire 95 years after the original work was published. Disney will lose the copyright Steamboat Willie 2024, as animated shorts were produced and released in 1928. Likewise, the issue of copyright expiration will resurface in the next few years, with Disney losing the rights to the iconic characters. other symbols such as Pluto and Donald Duck in 2030, if Congress does not renew the .

Steamboat Willie has been at the center of much discussion of copyright in US copyright law. Disney has been in danger of losing the rights to its original cartoons more than once in the past. First, copyright expired in 1983 because the US Copyright Act of 1928 protects works for 56 years from the date of creation. To protect Disney animated films, Congress passed a new copyright law that protects works for 50 years after the author’s death, resetting the expiration date to 2003. A new rule was introduced. passed in 1997 extended Disney’s rights to Mickey Mouse again.

The evolution of Mickey Mouse is still copyrighted

Mickey in the mouse house

The discussion about the expiration of Mickey Mouse’s copyright and congressional intervention in the matter may show how important the issue of copyright law is to Disney. However, this has less impact on the future of Disney and Mickey Mouse than many people think. In fact, the expired copyright belongs only to Steamboat Willieso the problem of Mickey Mouse expired copyright will only concern Steamboat Willie it’s him. The expiration of the copyright does not apply to any other films produced after 1928 featuring the character Mickey Mouse, nor does the character’s trademarks apply.

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As evidenced by recent discussions over Sherlock Homes’ copyright ownership, the rest of the Mickey Mouse story will remain copyrighted. Like the 1928 version of Mickey Mouse, appearing in Steamboat Willie, will be in the public domain, and any subsequent Mickey Mouse films or character evolution are still protected by copyright law. In other words, Mickey Mouse, the well-known and beloved character, remains under copyright and will remain so at least until 2030, when public domain issues and Disney characters are in place. may re-emerge, especially if no further changes are made. with applicable copyright laws. case.

Mickey Mouse will remain a registered trademark

Mickey works his magic in Fantasia.

It looks like Disney will keep the rights to Mickey Mouse for the foreseeable future. In particular, Mickey Mouse will remain owned by Disney as it is a registered trademark. In effect, this would make it possible for Disney to keep ownership of Mickey Mouse as its trademark forever, allowing Mickey to appear in upcoming Disney films. Unlike copyright, which expires after a certain number of years, trademark protection lasts forever, as long as Disney can claim that the Mickey Mouse character is affiliated with the Walt Disney Company itself.

Ultimately, Mickey Mouse will remain a legally protected Disney product. The strong alliance between Disney and Mickey Mouse, invested by the company itself, represents a strong defense for Disney, as the trademark will not expire anytime soon and Disney can control Mickey Mouse. Regardless of copyright laws and Steamboat WillieAfter the copyright expires, others still need Disney’s approval to use the Mickey Mouse material anywhere other than fair use, even if it’s material that would be in the public domain. plus, thanks to the rat’s trademark protection.

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That means Disney, now led by Bob Iger, still controls Mickey Mouse and its use of the character. Steamboat Willie will soon be released into the public domain, which will be open to most fair use, and Disney will retain control of Mickey Mouse through trademark protection. In fact, while an artist may use Steamboat WillieVersions of Mickey Mouse are used for their own purposes, and they may be infringing on trademark rights if they attempt to create their own brand based on an image of the iconic Disney character.

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