Square Enix has sued the producers of a music video containing cosplay recreations of scenes from its CG movie Final Fantasy VII Advent Children, and has been awarded a 400,000,000 won ($325,000) settlement for copyright violation.

The basis of the case is that Korean producer “Phantom Productions” violated Square’s copyrights and used “modified” sections of the movie without permission, in a successful music video used for commercial purposes. Korean courts agreed, and ordered Phantom to pay damages.

It is certainly undeniable that the video resembles the movie very closely. Whether it actually used sections of the movie as Square’s lengthy crowing insists is less apparent, though courts recognised the fact, so it is presumably the case. However, it does appears that the commercial cosplay was also an issue…

You can see the music video below:

Nico has spliced Advent Children together with the cosplay for comparison purposes (this is not the version made by the Koreans!):

Japanese commentators’ usual hatred of Korea is readily apparent in the general response, which is delighted. However, Japanese producers are famously no stranger to occasionally making “tributes” to other works, so there seems to be a double standard at play.

Additionally, a substantial number of Japanese cosplayers freely make unauthorised use of copyrighted properties in commercially created parody works, some on a highly commercial basis.

Whether parody or plagiarism, cosplayers will doubtless be concerned if the precedent spreads beyond Korea, none more so than TMA

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    Avatar of Bokusatsu Tenshi
    Comment by XSportSeeker
    05:42 06/08/2009 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    This one enter in my grey area.
    It goes like this:

    My personal morals and principles are ALWAYS against big corporations trying to sue others for copyright infringement... mainly because I'm against copyright laws.

    I personally think that copyright laws as they are today create a miriad of problems that is so deep in our culture people can't, won't, or just refuse to see.

    - Families living on the sucess of their parents even when they don't deserve it and have contributed nothing to society;
    - Anonymous singers that has fortunes enough to feed the starving population of an entire African country only because they made one record that had sucess in the past;
    - Corporations that has so much money from charging absurd prices on their products who fuels Associations like RIAA and MPAA to sue individuals who commited no crimes but try to make a living;

    And the examples go on.

    With a culture like that, also tons of people not only accepts that, but also grow up trying to be part of it.
    To make a big invention and retire for the rest of their lives, to make one big music hit thinking of the money and not on the fans, to use the legal system milking money from others...

    BUT, if we are to conform with present laws and how big corporations act, yes, this lawsuit is to be expected.

    And everything who copies, be it a tribute or not, should be worried too.
    Basically it goes like this: Big companies like Square Enix, tons of Hollywood studios, and record labels conveiently pick what they should or shouldn't put a lawsuit on.

    It's like a mining process. Some people who copy their content will have the money to pay, and people/fans/local justice system will agree said people deserved that lawsuit.

    In this specific case Squeenix hit jackpot.

    In other cases, like let's say, a cosplayer who yes, gets some money from it, but not much. A lawsuit will result in loss of money, in fans protesting, in the loss of free publicity, and in contradicting the common sense that cosplay is a harmless and even profitable copy of their content. Some will call it "tribute", but if you think straight, any copy can be considered "tribute".

    So yeah, it's our old rotten pure capitalist math. Nothing else.

    The very same idea applies to fansubs, fanart, videos that are removed or not from YouTube, and stuff like that.

    Unfortunately, it's the age we live in. Corporation rights always superseed that of individuals.

    Comment by Xony
    10:39 06/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    They rape the FF again

    Comment by Anonymous
    09:14 06/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Should they sue the make of Dead Fantasy as well??

    Comment by Anonymous
    10:16 06/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    WHAT THE HELL SC!???? FUCKING OLD!!?!?????????

    Avatar of Artefact
    Comment by Artefact

    Notice the date on their press release.

    Avatar of Y10NRDY
    Comment by Y10NRDY
    14:08 06/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    i thought this was an AV for a second. no tifa titties? nigga please i'm outta here.

    Comment by SJY
    14:18 06/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    I remember an interview of "Weird Al" Yankovic I have heard - Weird Al is one of the best maker of parody music and videos, the reason he never get sued for his work is simple, he always ask permission so nobody gets bent out of shape.

    Parody is not an issue in this Korean MV, it's clearly reproduced the scene and costume for it's own commericial purpose, not a parody intended to pay homage to FF7AD, so saying it's a parody in court would not make it a vaild defense anyway.

    Cosplay is not an issue here either, it's clearly for commericial purpose here, so it breaks the unwritten rule where copyright owner usually don't sue if the cosplaying is for private interest.

    Comment by Anonymous
    18:14 06/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    What about TMA making cospr0n? Clearly they are for a commercial purpose,

    Comment by Jaruto
    14:45 06/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)


    Comment by Nonaya Bitch
    13:58 06/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Old news is old.

    Comment by fightfilefive plus
    13:15 06/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    full of copy MV from thailand "FF8 and FF10 fusion"

    Comment by Anonymous
    08:37 06/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    I'm more insulted by the constant horrible abuse of Beethoven and other classical composers by people that can't write music

    Comment by PKtora
    06:15 06/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Old news. I heard about Square Suing the korean company that made this music video about a year ago.

    Avatar of Ward
    Comment by Xero
    06:12 06/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    the ONLY CG in the music video is special effects there is no Footage from advent children this BS would never fly in the US

    Avatar of vin-nii
    Comment by vin-nii
    06:03 06/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    a bit late to start suing. this video has been around for years

    Comment by EspadaKiller
    05:03 06/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    LOL PWNED! hahahaha

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:27 06/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Haha Koreans. Fuck them.

    Comment by MasterInfamous
    05:18 07/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    obvious troll is obvious.

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:43 06/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Old news is old.

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:34 06/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Wow that was really well done... and I kinda like the song too. Do I spot Reno among the dancers in the dancing scenes?

    Comment by 휘성
    14:12 08/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    아이비 좆됐내..

    Avatar of Polarbear925
    Comment by polarbear
    01:01 09/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Whatever the outcome of the suit, I'd like to see what the director of that video would do with a good full-length feature script. If the video is any indication, the visual effects alone would be worth a look.

    Comment by Anonymous
    Comment by Ch1nGFuX
    18:03 07/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    K-pop = insta-fail. The video was a good attempt but the adult models were fail. Now I see why SquareEnix wants to sue them xD

    Comment by killdamnzade
    04:42 10/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    one thing is for sure
    that's an ugly as tifa
    tifa has bigger boobs too lol

    Comment by hALOTOO
    12:19 10/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Compare to getting sued by a student this seem perfectly normal.Now we all know where SE got their money to buy Edios.

    Avatar of 21149315
    Comment by 21149315
    17:42 19/11/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    pfft they should be paying the directors of the music video. The video is better shot than most Japanese theater movies and videos put together.

    Avatar of shikakucomplex
    Comment by shikakucomplex
    03:29 07/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Shameless KimuTifawww

    Comment by Anonymous
    09:35 06/11/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    I think SE should also sue the company for choosing a butt ugly girl to cosplay Tifa. That's a grave insult to the very pretty Tifa. XD

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:37 10/09/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    You get what you deserv...

    Violation of the (c) what would they expect, cookies? :P

    Comment by mi
    17:16 27/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    it's ok because it's like advertise...

    what a kill joy, square are

    Comment by Anonymous
    00:00 07/09/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    And people will continue to zombishly throw money at SE so they can support their many lawyers to sue fans who do this.

    That's why SE games are so overpriced.

    Comment by SenseiSyaoranLi
    Comment by kKagari
    18:45 06/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    never have i rofled at an article so much. SUCKS TO THEM! LOL

    Comment by revoitech
    04:31 07/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Square won in Korean court!?
    how unusual...

    well anyway, justice has won.
    cosplay is OK, but this was too commercial.

    Avatar of Balto
    Comment by Balto
    08:20 07/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    I'ma get flamed by all of you for this I guess, but honestly, nobody noticed the script at the start in the ottom saying that this a recreation of the scen from FF vii AC for commerical usage? Of course I could be making a fool out of myself with posting this, but you guys are being idiots for being so obsessed with it. And no I do not dislike SE nor do I dislike Korea, I have the FF vii AC dvd, I liked it, and yes I did like this video, even though it was yet another fur elise one

    Avatar of onitake
    Comment by onitake
    09:39 07/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    humm surely someone's gonna sue them for using beethoven's 5th? or did they pay their dues for that at least?

    Comment by Toefu
    05:54 07/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    OMG that was FULL of FAIL!!! ripping of FFVII like that... I REALLY wonder what they were thinking when they produced that video, and surely, SURELY, they must've seen FFVII Advent Children to get the Ideas.... sometimes i wonder about some people, but they got what they deserved :D

    Comment by Fei-Long
    06:39 07/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    This is crazy that Square would sure for so much money.........damn

    Comment by kiah
    04:44 06/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    what is this music at second video. so nice

    Avatar of tomoemami
    Comment by yaku
    04:30 06/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    It looks a bit too much like the ripped material to be called a parody or rendition, besides they made this video for monetary purposes. If it was a bunch of cosplayers just having fun I'd call bullshit, but this is a professional work.

    Also about the double standards: happens everywhere, Japan is no exception.

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:16 06/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Exactly, this isn't a matter of 'parody' or plain old 'cosplay' this is scamming another persons work. So many other comments don't see why they are suing or they say it's just like cosplaying at a convention. What? Have you seen how they stole another persons work? That's not parody, that's called stealing. Figure it out people.

    Avatar of Key
    Comment by Key
    23:11 05/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    the music video is utterly black fro the whole 4 minute with text running but still no music??

    is it broken link?

    Comment by Schrobby
    23:19 05/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    They copied to make money, they have to pay money. Perfectly alright.

    Not the best stuff, still probably better than anything Hollywood can produce.

    Avatar of Katameido
    Comment by MaidNiac
    23:08 05/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Hmm.. Korea? Bet some are claiming "We did this first!!" just like Robo Taekwon V..

    Comment by KorTaku
    12:56 06/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    yeah im not sure where you heard this from...

    and im sure pepero has never claimed its first anywhere...

    Comment by MasterInfamous
    05:10 07/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Robo Taekwon V?

    I thought "The Japanese giant-robot manga and anime Mazinger Z was popular in South Korea at the time of Robot Taekwon V's creation, and Kim Cheong-gi freely discusses the influence of Mazinger Z on his cartoon, saying he wanted to create a Korean hero for Korean children."

    Comment by Anonymous
    20:13 07/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    i know japanese cultural products were banned in south korea until 1998...

    Comment by KorTaku
    08:08 07/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    exactly, he doesnt say his was first and that his is better or the original.

    Comment by Anonymous
    Avatar of hanzo
    Comment by Hanzo’
    03:58 06/08/2009 # ! Neutral (0)

    Can i see where you got your sources from.

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