I hope someone can enlighten me on this one. In my script I'm wanting to reproduce colloquial, everyday conversations during the course of which, major brand names would be mentioned for realism and flow rather than using pseudonyms.
Provided the brands were mentioned in a non-derogatory manner,would I be likely to be sued or would it be considered OK?
Does anyone have any experience of this? Thanks in anticipation.
You can be threatened with a law-suit for just about anything... but I don't think mentioning a brand will land you in court very fast.
The reason they are avoided has a lot more to do with locking your play into a very narrow moment in time for the viewing audience. A hot brand now might be an unremarkable element in some future time. Even between the time when you write the play and the time it takes (years, decades) to get the play produced can leave your brand references sounding flat and tired.
Your play will exist in production at some future point - will the sound of a brand name remain of that future moment, or will it be a bother?
Thank you,I,m thinking in terms of a brand which is so well known that it's become part of the language. For example Hoover which in colloquial english has become a verb for vacuum cleaning.Also Ferrari is synonomous with fast cars and Big Mac,no-one needs to ask what it is.
I take your point about future productions but some brands are so fixed in the consumer awareness that I feel not to mention them in a contemporary conversation, almost makes the lines seem false and stilted.
I personally enjoy reading classic plays and while reading them, am aware that they are fixed in time 20-100 years ago and represent the social attitudes of the time,it makes no difference to my enjoyment.