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Last Updated: Friday, 7 November, 2003, 11:18 GMT
Court blocks 16-hour Elvis film
Elvis Presley
The documentary included TV footage of Presley
A 16-hour Elvis Presley documentary has been banned by a US appeals court that ruled it had violated copyright.

The Definitive Elvis video sold for $99 (63) and included various TV appearances by Presley.

Elvis Presley Enterprises and Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller, who wrote hits such as Jailhouse Rock and Hound Dog, objected to their use.

The US appeals court in San Francisco upheld a lower court decision to block further distribution of the video.

"The king is dead," 9th Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Richard Tallman wrote in the decision.

"His legacy, and those who wish to profit from it, remain very much alive."

Documentary makers Passport Video said the film had cost more than $2m (1.2m) to make.

Intrinsic value

"It would be impossible to produce a biography of Elvis without showing some of his most famous television appearances for reference purposes," the court wrote.

"But some of the clips are played without much interruption, if any.

"The purpose of showing these clips likely goes beyond merely making a reference for a biography, but instead serves the same intrinsic entertainment value that is protected by plaintiff's copyrights."

But sitting on the three-judge panel, dissenter Judge John Noonan said there had been a "miscarriage of justice" because the ruling did not take into account the public interest in the Presley biography.

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