TOS rights belong to who?

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Lord Revan
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TOS rights belong to who?

Post by Lord Revan » 2018-08-03 11:48pm

I was wondering just who own the rights to TOS, I was in the impression that CBS owns the rights to all of "Star Trek" as far as the television series go, but someone in the STO forums claimed that NBC owns the rights to TOS (as an explation as to why things in Discovery aren't 100% copies of things in TOS). Granted it seems odd as CBS seems to be able to grant the rights to use TOS in licenced products, so it would seem odd that they couldn't use it in their own series. Also I Recall that NBC didn't own the rights even when they did air TOS (the rights were owned by the production company)

So is it true that NBC own the rights to TOS (at least in television) and thus CBS can't use those properties in Discovery even if they wanted to or is this person mistaken or lying?
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Re: TOS rights belong to who?

Post by Formless » 2018-08-04 12:46am

IIRC, NBC has nothing to do with it and does not own the Trek franchise in any way shape or form. Ownership is split between CBS and Paramount. Now, to my understanding the aesthetic differences between TOS and Discovery have to do with Paramount's legal agreements with Bad Robot Productions. Apparently those guys have legal rights pertaining to the aesthetic choices made in J.J. Abrams' Trek films, and CBS just has to suck it up and avoid copying Bad Robot's interpretation of the TOS aesthetic as best they can. So, if CBS wanted to do a straight up homage to TOS in precisely the TOS style they presumably could because they own the show, but if they want to update the TOS aesthetic to reflect 21'st century tastes they have to avoid stepping on J.J. Abrams' toes or else both owners of the franchise could get in legal trouble with him and his company. Yes its convoluted and stupid. That's IP law for you.
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Lord Revan
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Re: TOS rights belong to who?

Post by Lord Revan » 2018-08-04 12:57am

Formless wrote:
2018-08-04 12:46am
IIRC, NBC has nothing to do with it and does not own the Trek franchise in any way shape or form. Ownership is split between CBS and Paramount. Now, to my understanding the aesthetic differences between TOS and Discovery have to do with Paramount's legal agreements with Bad Robot Productions. Apparently those guys have legal rights pertaining to the aesthetic choices made in J.J. Abrams' Trek films, and CBS just has to suck it up and avoid copying Bad Robot's interpretation of the TOS aesthetic as best they can. So, if CBS wanted to do a straight up homage to TOS in precisely the TOS style they presumably could because they own the show, but if they want to update the TOS aesthetic to reflect 21'st century tastes they have to avoid stepping on J.J. Abrams' toes or else both owners of the franchise could get in legal trouble with him and his company. Yes its convoluted and stupid. That's IP law for you.
That makes sense, well as anything in the US IP laws do. As I said the "NBC owns the TOS rights" was offered as an explanation as to why Discovery hasn't ignored all the changes in technology and taste between when TOS aired and now.

As for why NBC was mentioned they were the channel who aired TOS orginally.
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Re: TOS rights belong to who?

Post by tezunegari » 2018-08-04 11:12am

IIRC CBS holds the rights to all TV shows and the new movies, at least according to cbsconsumerproducts.com.

The rights to the old Movies are held by Paramount Pictures AFAIK.
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