2122.6 (C) Component Element(s) of a Motion Picture
The U.S. Copyright Office considers a motion picture to be a unitary work in which the component parts are integral to the work as a whole. The Office generally will not register a separate renewal claim in a component element of a motion picture.
By regulation effective on May 12, 1975, renewal registration for a component element of a motion picture soundtrack (e.g., music, songs, screenplay, script) is possible only when:
• A separate registration for the original term was made for that element, or
• The motion picture bore a separate copyright notice for the component element.
See 37 C.F.R. § 202.15 (1975); Motion Picture Soundtracks, 40 Fed. Reg. 12,500, 12,501 (Mar. 19, 1975).
NOTE: This regulation applies only to motion pictures first published, or registered as unpublished works, before 1978.
Likewise, renewal registration is possible for a visual work or element (such as a painting or photograph) contained in a motion picture only when the work or element was registered separately for the original term, or the motion picture bore a separate copyright notice for the work.
NOTE: A renewal claim in a component element of a motion picture cannot be based on the original registration record for the motion picture.