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FILM DISCLOSURE ACT NEEDED TO GUARD CONSUMERS AGAINST HOLLYWOOD STUDIOS' SLEIGHT OF HAND, DIRECTOR SAYS

 FILM DISCLOSURE ACT NEEDED TO GUARD CONSUMERS AGAINST
 HOLLYWOOD STUDIOS' SLEIGHT OF HAND, DIRECTOR SAYS
 WASHINGTON, Sept. 23 /PRNewswire/ -- Consumers who rent, buy, or watch motion pictures outside of movie theaters are not seeing the real thing, a Hollywood film director told a Senate Subcommittee on Tuesday, Sept. 22.
 Elliot Silverstein, director of "Cat Ballou," "A Man Called Horse," and other motion pictures, testified before a Senate Judiciary Subcommittee in favor of "The Film Disclosure Act of 1992," which would require a label on any film that has been colorized, edited without the director's consent, or otherwise "materially altered."
 The bill is sponsored by Sen. Alan Simpson (R-Wy.) and Sen. Howard Metzenbaum (D-Ohio), and supported by the Directors Guild of America and other filmmaking groups.
 Silverstein, speaking on behalf of the DGA, told the Subcommittee on Patents, Copyrights and Trademarks that the public expects to be seeing an original version of a motion picture when it rents a film or watches it on television, but is often subjected to a materially altered copy.
 "All sorts of changes are routinely made to motion pictures before they get to consumers," Silverstein said. "When it comes to film products there is a real sleight of hand being practiced in the marketplace. The Film Disclosure Act would simply alert consumers to this practice."
 The Hollywood director said the bill is "a vote for consumers, for truth-in-advertising, for film artists and for the protection of a formidable part of our country's artistic heritage."
 Silverstein criticized the motion picture studios for objecting to this bill. "It's a very modest measure, despite the extraordinary intensity of the opposition to it," he said. "It would simply give consumers a fairer shake in the marketplace and would grant a modicum of legal respect to film artists."
 He noted that the motion picture industry also vehemently opposed introduction of VCRs into the United States, claiming that the motion picture business would be irreparably damaged.
 "Now of course the revenues from cassette sales and rentals are crucial in financing movies. The sky didn't fall then, and it won't fall if the Film Disclosure Act is passed."
 If passed, the Film Disclosure Act would require labels alerting viewers that a film has been altered, and would permit the authors of the film -- such as writers and directors -- to briefly state their objection to the modified work.
 /delval/
 -0- 9/23/92
 /CONTACT: Myrna Baron of Myrna Baron Public Relations, 212-677-1747, or Chuck Warn of the Directors Guild of America, 818-785-6321/ CO: Directors Guild of America ST: District of Columbia IN: SU:


MJ-CC -- PH049 -- 2854 09/23/92 17:41 EDT
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Date:Sep 23, 1992
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