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Beatles face lawsuit over Shea Stadium footage copyright

Family of late promoter Sid Bernstein say their company should be awarded ownership of copyright for 1965 Shea Stadium film of iconic Beatles gig

A company representing the promoter of the Beatles' iconic 1965 Shea Stadium gig is suing over ownership of the footage.

Sid Bernstein Presents LLC is suing Apple Corps Ltd and Subafilms Limited, saying the late promoter Bernstein is the sole owner of the master tapes of the band's performance at New York's Shea Stadium on August 15, 1965.

The footage has been used in various films over the years and remastered segments will feature in new Ron Howard-directed film The Beatles: Eight Days A Week – The Touring Years which is released tomorrow (Friday, September 16).

According to Billboard, a lawsuit filed in the US District Court in New York says Bernstein, who died in 2013 at the age of 95, produced the concert and hired the Beatles and the support acts.

It reads: "Without Sid, the mastermind of the event, this film would never have been made. The Bernstein family is guided by their father’s spirit of peace and humanity. However, they are also guided by principle and look forward to having an opportunity to present their case in court."

It is understood that the lawsuit won't impact the release of The Beatles: Eight Days A Week – The Touring Years.

Possible solutions proposed in the lawsuit include having the master tapes being given to Sid Bernstein Presents LLC as sole author, or joint author with the Beatles.

Also, the legal papers ask that previous uses of the footage be declared copyright infringement.

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