Public domain film  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

Public domain film is a film that was released to public domain by its author or because its copyright has expired.

Public domain film by country

Articles about post-1923 theatrical-released films that are in the public domain in the region of original release, the United States, and/or other English-speaking regions. It does not address the copyright status of (for example) a U.S.-released film in the European Union, where copyrights last 70 years after the death of the creator, or in Mexico, where copyright lasts 100 years after the death of the creator.

Media may be available on Wikimedia Commons or other sites such as the Internet Archive.

Many pre-1954 Japanese films have passed into public domain in Japan. See Japanese Films copyright timeline.

Due to the U.S. Copyright Term Extension Act, no more films will automatically enter public domain in the United States until January 1, 2019, when the copyright will expire on films released in 1923 (and in 2020 films from 1924, and so on).

Note: As changes have been made to both domestic and international copyright laws in the last two decades, some works may have been once reported to be in the public domain, but no longer are. Please do not accept this list as a final source for the copyright status of a film in any country.

Note that restored, subtitled, and dubbed versions of films can themselves be subject to copyright, even if other elements of the film are in the public domain. Thus even if a film dates from 1915 and as such is ineligible for copyright in the United States of America, a 2004 version with new visual or audio elements (including the addition of a new recording of the score of a silent film) may be itself eligible for a 2004 copyright to those new elements. Special features and packaging are themselves subject to copyright protection.

See also




Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Public domain film" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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