It is always interesting to find industries in which intellectual property (IP) has not typically been used to best benefit, and to study how it could be used to enhance the business and ultimately provide better returns on investment. A number of years ago, ipCG assisted James Hardie, a building materials company, in this journey. We helped them to recognize that their innovations in fiber cement could provide significant returns via IP, and worked with them to build an IP position to deliver competitive advantage and increased value to shareholders. The film industry (and satellite supporting technology areas) has yet to make this leap of discovery.
Historically this sector has focused on digital media rights, trademarks, and copyright. It has not recognized the numerous ways that innovations can be captured through the creative process, and harnessed for future use and value. Creative solutions are continually being developed on set and throughout the entire filming process, but only a small segment of these innovations are ever noted, documented, and moved forward for appropriate protection and monetization.
Whether used simply for enhancement of brand, developed and sold as a new product, or licensed to other film industry companies or studios, these inventions are being missed and are wasted opportunities for the studio and the companies involved to increase their revenue based on creative thinking - ironically, the lifeblood of the film industry.
Charles Root expands on this concept of “IP on set, all the time” in an article here; a very interesting idea whose time may have come.