Skip to main content

Exploring Preservation, Access and Creative Reuse of Film with Sherlock Holmes

Copyright & Creative Reuse was an event held at BFI Southbank in London on 8th December 2017 as part of the CREATe Copyright & Innovation Network. The event explored the role of copyright in relation to creativity, film archives, and education, with focus on creative reuse. The common theme to tie these topics together was the creative reuse of the character of Sherlock Holmes. The evolving journey of the notorious detective from Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s stories illustrated by Sidney Paget to its most recent adaptations – passing through William Gillette, Basil Rathbone and others – provides a compelling story to explore the role of copyright in relation to creativity, archives, and education.

Copyright & Creative Reuse, BFI Southbank

The event brought together film archivists and custodians, filmmakers and other creators, and included legal responses from leading copyright experts. It provided the platform for a constructive dialogue between the people who preserve and provide access to existing films, and those who wish to reuse films in the creation of new work. We hope it will constitute the basis for a structured conversation on the opportunities and challenges posed by copyright law to the work of film archivists and filmmakers. Below you can access the transcripts of the speakers’ presentations.

11:00-11:10: Welcome and – Bartolomeo Meletti (CREATe, University of Glasgow / BFI)

11:15-13:00: Preservation, Digitisation & Access

Chair: Claudy Op den Kamp, Bournemouth University

Legal respondent: Leontien Bout (Lawyer and archivist, EYE, Amsterdam) + Panel Discussion

13:45-15:30: Creative Reuse

Chair: Maurizio Borghi, Bournemouth University

Legal respondent: Lionel Bently, University of Cambridge

15:50-17:00: Screening of Buster Keaton’s Sherlock Jr. (1924), accompanied by Neil Brand

The event was part of the CREATe Copyright & Innovation Network, funded by AHRC Follow-on Funding, ‘Unlocking Co-Creative Possibilities’, (AH/P013341/1), jointly organised with Queen’s University, Belfast and CIPPM (Bournemouth University).