“Cleaned” Movies Illegal

A federal district judge in Colorado put a stop companies selling “cleaned up” DVD versions of movies.  From the July 8th Rocky Mountain News:

Three companies that produce family-friendly versions of films edited to remove objectionable content are violating studio copyrights to the movies and must stop, a federal judge has ruled.

In an order signed Thursday, U.S. District Judge Richard P. Matsch ordered CleanFlicks, of Colorado; Family Flix, of Arizona; and Play it Clean Video, of Utah, to stop producing the films edited to remove profanity, sex and violence.

There was already bad news for Colorado-based CleanFlicks before Judge Matsch reached his ruling:

“It didn’t really surprise us much,” David Schacter, attorney for CleanFlicks, said of the ruling.

He said CleanFlicks has gone out of business during the course of the lawsuit, filed in 2002, because there wasn’t as large a demand for the edited films as the company anticipated.

“Most of them are out of business, and if they aren’t now, they will be,” he said. “The injunction is clear.”

Judge Matsch also stated that if individual families purchased tools to “clean” out DVDs on their own, this would still be legal.  Apparently, there are “smutless” DVD players out there.

Is this the end of “Movie Night” down at Focus on the Family?