Tony Palmer presents "Bird on a wire"

News about Leonard Cohen and his work, press, radio & TV programs etc.
User avatar
neo
Posts: 371
Joined: Tue Feb 06, 2007 3:17 am
Location: Vienna

Re: Tony Palmer presents "Bird on a wire"

Post by neo » Fri Sep 03, 2010 11:09 pm

International copyright is a tricky business... At first I was guessing that Sony might have found a legal loophole for the US and Palmer's release was secure in the UK as there were no problems ordering it from the UK. But now this doesn't seem to be the case when it can be ordered from other US retailers...
In the past I have ordered non-legit releases from Amazon (sometimes knowingly, sometimes not) and I thought that they did not care too much about it or it was too complicated to check every release... i.e. Dylan's Folksinger's Choice can be ordered at Amazon in the UK but not in the US
User avatar
musicmania
Posts: 1505
Joined: Fri Jul 24, 2009 7:49 pm
Location: Kildare Town Ireland
Contact:

Re: Tony Palmer presents "Bird on a wire"

Post by musicmania » Fri Sep 03, 2010 11:33 pm

neo wrote:International copyright is a tricky business... At first I was guessing that Sony might have found a legal loophole for the US and Palmer's release was secure in the UK as there were no problems ordering it from the UK. But now this doesn't seem to be the case when it can be ordered from other US retailers...
In the past I have ordered non-legit releases from Amazon (sometimes knowingly, sometimes not) and I thought that they did not care too much about it or it was too complicated to check every release... i.e. Dylan's Folksinger's Choice can be ordered at Amazon in the UK but not in the US
That Dylan CD came up in an email of recommendations for me from Amazon UK. The other 7 CDs recommended in that email were all LC ones.... Considering I've bought hundreds of CD's from them from lots of different artists it says alot about my recent buys :lol:
2009 Dublin 2010 Lissadell Katowice LV x2 2012 Ghent x2 Dublin x4 Montreal x2 Toronto x2 2013 New York x2 Brussels Dublin x2

Gwen's Leonard Cohen Journey: http://myleonardcohenjourney.wordpress.com/

"I did my best, it wasn't much"
bene449
Posts: 95
Joined: Mon Aug 11, 2008 1:11 pm

Re: Tony Palmer presents "Bird on a wire"

Post by bene449 » Fri Sep 03, 2010 11:35 pm

and, as if by magic, I check my email and there is an email from Sony insisting that i stop selling the dvd "Bird on a wire", and return all unsold dvds to them. If you still want this dvd, I suggest you buy it sooner than later, whether you buy a signed copy or an unsigned copy.
I bet the Tony Palmer signed copies become a collector's item when this hits the press!

Vince
http://www.leonardcohencafe.co.uk
User avatar
Davido
Posts: 1695
Joined: Mon Jan 30, 2006 3:47 am
Location: UK

Re: Tony Palmer presents "Bird on a wire"

Post by Davido » Fri Sep 03, 2010 11:58 pm

My opinion :-
This is outrageous.
I know I said earlier that I would write more, but as Vince says, we don't want to put Tony Palmer's position in any jeopardy. I am trying to clarify with him just what can be said here.
I do think the fans should be made aware of what is going on; after all, we are the supporters and consumers who have paid a lot of money to Sony over the years....
Tony Palmer and his team have put an enormous amount of time and effort into producing a truly remarkable film of that 72 tour in Bird On A Wire. I believe he deserves our support.
- Dave
"Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies"~ Groucho Marx
User avatar
neo
Posts: 371
Joined: Tue Feb 06, 2007 3:17 am
Location: Vienna

Re: Tony Palmer presents "Bird on a wire"

Post by neo » Sat Sep 04, 2010 12:27 am

I feel sorry for Tony Palmer and it seems these days you don't own your own work...
User avatar
sirius
Posts: 459
Joined: Tue Apr 08, 2008 4:09 am
Location: Manchester

Re: Tony Palmer presents "Bird on a wire"

Post by sirius » Sat Sep 04, 2010 1:17 am

bene449 wrote:and, as if by magic, I check my email and there is an email from Sony insisting that i stop selling the dvd "Bird on a wire", and return all unsold dvds to them. If you still want this dvd, I suggest you buy it sooner than later, whether you buy a signed copy or an unsigned copy.
I bet the Tony Palmer signed copies become a collector's item when this hits the press!

Vince
http://www.leonardcohencafe.co.uk
Hi Vince

I Hope you managed to dispatch my copy!

Peter Solomon
We are so small between the stars, so large against the sky
User avatar
lightning
Posts: 1353
Joined: Fri Jul 19, 2002 4:54 am
Location: New York City
Contact:

Re: Tony Palmer presents "Bird on a wire"

Post by lightning » Sat Sep 04, 2010 1:46 am

Most grievances can be resolved with money. Can't Sony be appeased somehow?
User avatar
Davido
Posts: 1695
Joined: Mon Jan 30, 2006 3:47 am
Location: UK

Re: Tony Palmer presents "Bird on a wire"

Post by Davido » Sat Sep 04, 2010 2:15 am

I can now say that Tony Palmer's lawyer for Isolde films has written to Sony pointing out that they have no case to answer. All of Sony's claims have been denied.
Also, in respect of distributors who have been 'advised' not to stock or distribute the film, Tony Palmer has said:
''We are also advised that the US Distributor will have a legitimate claim for considerable damages against SONY because of their precipitate actions.''
"Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies"~ Groucho Marx
User avatar
lightning
Posts: 1353
Joined: Fri Jul 19, 2002 4:54 am
Location: New York City
Contact:

Re: Tony Palmer presents "Bird on a wire"

Post by lightning » Sat Sep 04, 2010 2:24 am

That's good news. I was going to call for a boycott of all Sony products .
User avatar
MarieM
Posts: 863
Joined: Fri Jun 28, 2002 1:36 am
Location: Michigan, USA

Re: Tony Palmer presents "Bird on a wire"

Post by MarieM » Sat Sep 04, 2010 2:57 am

With regard to the discussion of the distribution of the Bird on a Wire film, this is what we have learned from Leonard's management.
SONY believes Tony Palmer and Steve Machat do not have the rights to distribute the film and SONY is enforcing its rights with distributors worldwide. Amazon in the US already acknowledges SONY's rights. SONY is proceeding to enforce its rights worldwide and distributors worldwide are cooperating with SONY, but this is creating an unfortunate amount of work and antagonism.

Vince's actions in distributing the Bird on a Wire film, as well as Tony Palmer's and Steve Machat's actions, harm Leonard and his relationship with SONY which Robert Kory and his team have spent three years rebuilding and which, as a result, gave us Live in London, Isle of Wight, and now Songs from the Road.

Robert Kory has been trying to work with SONY so this product can also be released, but unilateral action by Tony, Steve and Vince, is not the way to do it. Vince risks undoing all the good work accomplished with SONY to date by making the pronouncements he is making. Robert Kory warned Steven Machat and Tony Palmer that SONY would object to their unilateral effort to release the film when he learned of that effort at the end of May. Now the fans suffer because a product that could have been released seems likely to get tied up in litigation. Robert and Leonard are disappointed that their efforts to get the original film materials (which Leonard preserved for 22 years paying large storage costs) in Tony Palmer's hands have not been met with reciprocal respect of a request to cooperate with SONY, and instead have created a problem.

We hope this answers some of your questions.

Jarkko and Marie
Marie
Speaking Cohen
User avatar
lightning
Posts: 1353
Joined: Fri Jul 19, 2002 4:54 am
Location: New York City
Contact:

Re: Tony Palmer presents "Bird on a wire"

Post by lightning » Sat Sep 04, 2010 3:13 am

Too bad this masterpiece of film art has to be referred to as "product." Boycott Sony.
User avatar
lizzytysh
Posts: 25445
Joined: Thu Jun 27, 2002 8:57 pm
Location: Florida, U.S.A.

Re: Tony Palmer presents "Bird on a wire"

Post by lizzytysh » Sat Sep 04, 2010 3:38 am

WHAT!?! This is horrible news! Leave it to SONY!
"Be yourself. Everyone else is already taken."
~ Oscar Wilde
User avatar
sirius
Posts: 459
Joined: Tue Apr 08, 2008 4:09 am
Location: Manchester

Re: Tony Palmer presents "Bird on a wire"

Post by sirius » Sat Sep 04, 2010 4:44 am

lightning wrote:Too bad this masterpiece of film art has to be referred to as "product." Boycott Sony.
I agree with lightning.

I think the only explanation for this mess is that Leonard is being badly advised by Robert Kory, who like all lawyer/managers sees only the financial/legal dimension not the artistic big picture, as they have a vested interest in keeping the big bad capitalist wolf SONY happy. For all Leonard's Artistic Sensibility and supreme soulful integrity, he has previous form, and has been far too trusting of managers in the past.

I would trust Tony Palmer's judgement call on this.

I feel I have some emotional interest and right to comment as I saw the film at the cinema back in 1974, and more pertinently I was also present at the Belle Vue Manchester Concert in March 1972 where I remember them filming the concert... for this film, and Leonard making comments to the effect that they were filming him for posterity. I also remember Leonard Cohen holding a bottle of wine and then pouring some of it's contents onto the stage and saying this was for us, the audience. I was quite near the front and could see the cameramen filming. I believe quite a few songs including the title track 'Bird on a Wire' were used from that concert and made it on to the final documentary Film. I believed the film was lost to us forever. Now SONY are doing their best to bury it again.

One of the last songs he sang at the Belle Vue concert 38 years ago was that old chestnut "As Time Goes By", well too much time has past and it's now the right time for this FILM to be released and seen by all Leonard Cohen's fans.

Peter
We are so small between the stars, so large against the sky
User avatar
lizzytysh
Posts: 25445
Joined: Thu Jun 27, 2002 8:57 pm
Location: Florida, U.S.A.

Re: Tony Palmer presents "Bird on a wire"

Post by lizzytysh » Sat Sep 04, 2010 6:24 am

Oh, dear... I've 'just' come into this discussion, and I'm upset with Sony for more than one reason. However, impugning Robert Kory's motives on behalf of Leonard, as his manager, is over the top and upsetting, too... and not at all appropriate. It seems to me a difference of opinion based on multiple factors that none of US are privy to... but that doesn't translate to ill-will of any of the parties involved in this, save SONY, in my opinion. You're very fortunate to have been at that concert, Peter, and I can understand your attachment to the film. I was deeply moved by it numerous times and I wasn't there, at all. I feel the film, in Tony Palmer's and Steve Machat's re-done form, is the film all of us deserve to see and have. As lightning has said, it's a masterpiece. A film of great thought and depth... far more than just a 'road trip.'

I'm grateful for this film which was made with great integrity and devotion to the original work of art that Tony Palmer created. Thanks to Leonard's trust and openness at the time, we are privileged to experience Leonard with an intimacy we would never be able to experience today. Thanks to Tony, who knew of his own, original intentions, all of it was brought to us in a cohesive and understandable form that built in the emotional way that it was meant to build. I cried at more than several points throughout it, and at the end, I simply sat and cried. I would love it if everyone just embraced it and allowed it to just be and to go on to the many people around the world who love Leonard. The man he was then and the man he has become show through it brilliantly. Yet, his absolute vulnerability is there for us, too. We owe it to these three men, Leonard and Tony and Steve Machat to see the Leonard Cohen we loved then and the Leonard Cohen we love now.

I do not understand SONY'S position. This is not their film. It is not the man's who put out the redone 'original' ~ it is Tony's film and he has redone it with Steve's assistance, with the same commitment to excellence that Leonard has always done with his own songs. The result is beautiful, moving, and relevant. Now, how everyone weighs in on this now is another matter altogether. I don't feel or believe at all that Robert Kory is selfishly mis-advising Leonard. Leonard may have been out of touch on Mt. Baldy, but I'm confident he's in the mix and in agreement with whatever Robert is doing on his behalf now... whether we understand it or not. Three years of trying to rebuild a relationship is a long time and we all know what a gentleman Leonard is and it seems easy to imagine that he would not want that relationship interrupted.

The only way I'm seeing this is as a very painful situation... good people [well, SONY is a corporation, with corporate goals, so I'm referring to the key people already mentioned] with differing priorities, but no less honourable ones.

That's it for now. I couldn't just go to bed without saying at least this much.


~ Lizzy
"Be yourself. Everyone else is already taken."
~ Oscar Wilde
User avatar
neo
Posts: 371
Joined: Tue Feb 06, 2007 3:17 am
Location: Vienna

Re: Tony Palmer presents "Bird on a wire"

Post by neo » Sat Sep 04, 2010 8:58 am

I guess Sony claims to own the film because of the "BBC edit" while Tony Palmer claims to own his original cut. Sony can afford hiring a lot of lawyers... so I guess the Palmer film will be lost to the vaults for a long time. A sad story indeed.
Post Reply

Return to “News”