'This Is Spinal Tap' Creators and UNIVERSAL MUSIC Settle Copyright Dispute

'This Is Spinal Tap' Creators and UNIVERSAL MUSIC Settle Copyright Dispute

Harry Shearer, Christopher Guest, Michael McKean and Rob Reiner, the creators of the iconic mockumentary film "This Is Spinal Tap", have resolved their dispute with Universal Music Group regarding the film's soundtrack recordings.

Under the agreement, "Spinal Tap"'s recordings will continue to be distributed through UMG and eventually the rights will be given to the creators. The parties look forward to making these beloved recordings available to existing and new "Spinal Tap" fans for years to come.

Shearer said: "I must admit, from the moment we first began mediation with them to now, I've been impressed by UMG's respect for creatives and their distinctive desire to seek a prompt and equitable solution to the issues."

Guest said: "It was refreshing to be treated so constructively and with such courtesy by UMG and I'm pleased we have been able to resolve this."

Released in 1984, the mockumentary follows the fictional heavy metal rock band SPINAL TAP on tour.

"This Is Spinal Tap", produced on a shoestring budget, has become a cult classic since its first theatrical run. The film has garnered international praise and acclaim, having been included in "best-ever" lists such as The New York Times Guide to the Best 1,000 Movies Ever Made; Entertainment Weekly's 100 Greatest Movies of All Time where it appeared on the "Just Too Beloved to Ignore" list; and the 100 Greatest Movies of All Time list published by Total Film.

The band, composed of Shearer, Guest and McKean, performing as their beloved stage personae in the company of a rotating cast of percussionists willing to risk the kit (as so many of their predecessors have been accident prone), has toured the world multiple times since the film's release. Hundreds of thousands of "Spinal Tap" sound recordings have been sold over the ensuing decades and the film has been released on a host of video formats down the years.

Full-length "Spinal Tap" albums are still available for physical sale, download and streaming today.

"This Is Spinal Tap" was released to little fanfare with some viewers convinced the bumbling dinosaurs — who had a knack of losing drummers in freak accidents — on screen were a genuine band. But word of mouth about the smartly observed film, which took a pop at bands such as STATUS QUO, LED ZEPPELIN and BLACK SABBATH, spread and it became a sleeper hit.

According to the Belfast Telegraph, McKean, Guest and Shearer prepared several scenes with Reiner but then ad-libbed. At the end of filming, they had more than 40 hours of footage, which was edited down to a more manageable form.

When "This Is Spinal Tap" was released, not everybody got that it was a "mockumentary." U2's The Edge immediately embraced it, saying: "I didn't laugh, I wept. It was so close to the truth." Ozzy Osbourne didn't understand it, saying the first time he watched it, he thought it was a real documentary. Early home video versions of the movie reportedly even had a disclaimer at the start and finish of the movie stating the band didn't really exist.

Tags:

Posted in: News

COMMENTS

To comment on a BLABBERMOUTH.NET story or review, you must be logged in to an active personal account on Facebook. Once you're logged in, you will be able to comment. User comments or postings do not reflect the viewpoint of BLABBERMOUTH.NET and BLABBERMOUTH.NET does not endorse, or guarantee the accuracy of, any user comment. To report spam or any abusive, obscene, defamatory, racist, homophobic or threatening comments, or anything that may violate any applicable laws, use the "Report to Facebook" and "Mark as spam" links that appear next to the comments themselves. To do so, click the downward arrow on the top-right corner of the Facebook comment (the arrow is invisible until you roll over it) and select the appropriate action. You can also send an e-mail to blabbermouthinbox(@)gmail.com with pertinent details. BLABBERMOUTH.NET reserves the right to "hide" comments that may be considered offensive, illegal or inappropriate and to "ban" users that violate the site's Terms Of Service. Hidden comments will still appear to the user and to the user's Facebook friends. If a new comment is published from a "banned" user or contains a blacklisted word, this comment will automatically have limited visibility (the "banned" user's comments will only be visible to the user and the user's Facebook friends).