It’s time for some background information on one of our beloved screenwriters! You probably know Amy Keating Rogers as the writer of The Ticket MasterApplebuck SeasonBridle Gossip, Fall Weather Friends, A Dog and Pony Show, The Best Night Ever, The Cutie Pox, The Last Roundup, and A Friend in Deed, but she can not only write beautiful pony episodes, she can also make movies and sing.

The song and trailer above is for her very own documentary Jason Bateman Thinks I’m Dead, which tells an intriguing and borderline surreal story from her life. (You can also subscribe to her on YouTube.) Unfortunately, copyright issues have prevented her from marketing the film, or even making it accessible to a wider audience. So far there’ve only been a few screenings to raise funds for her disabled son Soren Rogers, a cause to which also Lauren Faust herself has contributed. (However, “the time for donations for Soren is now over.”)

Here is the problem in her own words (which we have her permission to quote):

Amy Keating Rogers by Lauren Faust

Amy Keating Rogers by Lauren Faust

As for my movie, I really wish you could show it. Everyone who sees it loves it!

However, you’re right. It’s not for sale. The reason for this is that, in my editing, I pulled images from the internet to help tell parts of the story. For instance, I did a recap of Jason’s career showing stills from movies and shows he’s worked on. I also did a little recap on my career as well, doing the same thing as I spoke the voice over.

The problem is, I do not have clearance to use these images, and it is VERY costly and complicated! I tried to get the film picked up for distribution. That way they could pay for the clearances. However, anyone that picks up a film and puts money in it wants to make sure that they not only make their money back but also make a profit. And while everyone really enjoys my cute, sweet film, it’s really a “niche” market and getting back their investment isn’t a guarantee.

So, I’ve only gotten to have a few small screenings for friends. I fear it will always just be a project I did for the experience that the masses will never see.

I hoped that more folks would see my trailer/music video on YouTube, but even that’s only gotten about 1,200 hits. That’s a song that I actually wrote both the music and lyrics for! Feel free to tell people about it!

So if you want to see the film, then reform the American copyright law—or perhaps you know other ways to help. I hope we’ll one day be able to watch it!

  • How much money are we talking here?

    • I don’t know, but you know how to reach her. Then again it’s not only costly but complicated as well, as she pointed out. :-P

      • I’d love some more details about it because I think bronies could show support and get it into at least some theatres. We’re everywhere, SOMEpony has got to have a hookup at a theatre and can swing it.

        • Yes, that would be great. I hope somepony has those contacts.

  • Maureen

    Or Brony artists could DRAW pictures (or even cartoons) replacing the stills.

    • She said there were a considerable number of those stills, and it would be a lot of work, but if someone has the skill and is willing to do it, they should definitely get in touch.

      • Tara Strong tweeted a voice tweet of a Fergilicious song and an hour later there was a fully animated version on Youtube with lip-syncing, I’m sure bronies can get this done.

  • Pony Esquire

    Incorporating images into another work for a new purpose (such as commentary in a documentary) can be fair use under copyright law. This is true even for commercial works. She should check out the Documentary Filmmakers’ Best Practices for Fair Use at http://www.centerforsocialmedia.org/fair-use/best-practices/documentary/documentary-filmmakers-statement-best-practices-fair-use . By complying with them, it’s possible for filmmakers to get insurance against potential claims, which lets some films get made that otherwise wouldn’t.

    Other possible resources are the Stanford Fair Use project or cyberlaw clinics around the country. They might or might not be interested in taking on this kind of matter on a pro bono basis.