Author Topic: Suggestions or opinions on selling custom figures?  (Read 1066 times)

Offline patreektherodian

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Suggestions or opinions on selling custom figures?
« on: July 2, 2007, 09:06 PM »
Any of you who saw my Ewoks get painted at C4 would know that they whent like hot cakes. Would any body know the legality of selling such items. Yes they are clones and possibly bootlegs however, after they are painted and customized are they still considered bootleg? I'm thinking of casting astromech and Jawas.

Through my contacts at Lucas films, I Emailed Steve Sansweet but he has not replied.
« Last Edit: October 4, 2011, 11:02 AM by Jeff »

Offline jedistyle

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Re: I need your suggestions or opinions
« Reply #1 on: July 2, 2007, 11:39 PM »
i wouldn't think it would be to big a problem. those are small figures and it's not like your going to dramaticly impact hasbro or anyone elses profits. it dosn't seem to much different than casting weapons and selling them like maurader or GTG. but i'm no lawyer. ;)
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Offline Jesse James

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Re: I need your suggestions or opinions
« Reply #2 on: July 3, 2007, 12:55 AM »
Any reproduction of existing merchandise for profit is "bootlegging" by definition...  So it's definitely not legal, but that doesn't stop people from doing it obviously.  Whether LFL decides to stop you or not, depends.  They stopped several companies from bootlegging/marketing knock-offs recently, fairly small time...

They shut down a couple garage-kit model companies not TOO long ago actually...  They sculpted (from scratch) Star Wars ships and cast them in resin and sold them, limiting their production to only the double digits in some cases...  If they can get shut down I 100% guarantee a C&D can go to someone casting Hasbro figures, painting them, and selling them.

Like I said though, whether they do or not depends I suppose on their motivation to do so...  LFL's real protective of its materials though and I can attest that Hasbro is as well.  I thought there was actually something even mentioned about the Ewok castings by Frank prior to C4 that he got "permission" to do all that with giving them away and all?  I forget but I could've sworn something was said about that at one point or another.  Senility is setting in though.  :P

Most forums/boards also have "bootlegging" rules in place against that stuff...  We've gotten notes from LFL on people selling bootleg DVD's for instance...  We had to ban a guy selling bootleg lightsabers once that he hand-made.  Rebelscum had a policy in place on DVD's at the same time as we did and I recall something about one of their staffers at the time selling bootleg DVD's off the site till they got caught doing it (and telling others at the same time that they couldn't, IIRC).

From a strictly legal definition of the whole matter though, basically anything like that's a no-no as it does violate LFL copyright laws and things.

For the record too...

GTG customs casts things that someone else worked to produce.  For instance I see they have a cast of a sawed off shotgun from BBI...  That's illegal bootlegging, to cast that other company's work and sell it for profit.  I'm not knocking them, that's not an insult IMO, it's simply the truth...

Maurader Inc. who we have a working relationship with here at JediDefender.com, sculpt their accessories from "the ground up" and cast them, and they are put into professional production by manufacturers (overseas if I'm not mistaken) like a toy company would do.  The only non-sculpted items on their site are items I believe they have a deal to sell from a line called "Power Team Elite" that includes folding chairs and whatnot.  Marauder's weapons and such though are hand sculpted though otherwise.

A company similar to GTG customs in EVERY way really, was shut down back in the early 00's or so, I forget when now, for selling reproduction casts of Hasbro work, so obviously that's proof that they can and do get shut down sometimes, probably dependant upon how "above the radar" they wind up flying and getting into Hasbro's sights.
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Offline patreektherodian

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Re: I need your suggestions or opinions
« Reply #3 on: July 3, 2007, 05:03 AM »
Reply thanks for the detailed responce. I want to be able to do something sikilar at the next convention. Therefore I don't want to do anything questionable, And yes you were right Niub did get permission.

Offline Master_Phruby

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Re: I need your suggestions or opinions
« Reply #4 on: July 3, 2007, 09:52 AM »
As a fan booth we were completely forbidden from selling anything at the convention. We had to get everything we displayed (lit, banners, logos, stickers) approved by LFL first. If you wanted to sell something, you had to get a exhibitor booth which cost a minimum of $500 and pay lots of union fees for handling your stuff. 
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Offline patreektherodian

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Re: I need your suggestions or opinions
« Reply #5 on: July 3, 2007, 10:53 PM »
I was talking outside of a convention setting.  IE a flee market/ street vendor/ebay.

Offline Jesse James

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Re: I need your suggestions or opinions
« Reply #6 on: July 4, 2007, 02:22 AM »
People sell things that I fully believe aren't licensed at the local Toy Show here...  I've seen customs for sale I know, which is essentially the same deal (and why custom sales on Ebay get shut down en masse at times), at the show, but I can't think of a time I saw someone selling simply nothing but "bootleg" type stuff I guess...

Hard to say on what COULD happen or whatnot...  You never know really.  Sorry that's probably not a lot of help though ultimately, but it's just my experiences and knowledge I could share.  Sorry it's not the most helpful ultimately.
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Offline patreektherodian

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Re: I need your suggestions or opinions
« Reply #7 on: July 5, 2007, 03:38 PM »
I think what I will do is run workshops on how to decorate these items. The figure would be free. I know Micheal's runs classes.  I'm just thinking of ways to help put my baby through daycare. Besides, I know for a fact that I have invested at least
10 k in Hasbro's stuff. It would be nice to get some of that back with out selling my collection.