Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Thanks for your support

Dear Ms. Blake:

Thank you for your correspondence dated June 4, 2007 wherein you requested Hasbro, Inc.’s permission to use the above-referenced product in conjunction with a film entitled “GAME NIGHT”.

I have reviewed your request with the appropriate people within Hasbro and regret to advise you that Hasbro cannot grant you permission to refer to or use the above-referenced product or any of its distinctive elements which are trademarks of Hasbro, in the manner you request.

We receive a large number of requests to use our products in many different ways. Unfortunately, in order to protect our intellectual property, such as copyrights and trademarks, we are simply unable to grant the vast majority of requests.

I am sorry that we cannot accommodate you in this matter. We appreciate your interest in TABOO and hope that you continue to enjoy our products.

Very truly yours,



  1. You said it has to be Taboo...but does it really have to be? TV shows and movies are always inventing fake products, why can't you? Call it Forbidden, Verboten, Censored, Not Allowed, Prohibition, Inhibition...all right, I just pulled some words from a thesaurus, but no way this has to stop you from making the movie. Make up your own game and you'll really have no limits. Or just call the game No Limits!

  2. Well the name of the game is never mentioned in the script so we don't actually have to change anything, just hide the logo. Still, it's really frustrating. It take away one of our major symbols.

  3. Also, I like your idea. We could just use a synonym. Still, I'm annoyed.

    But that brings up a question: Would it be better to imply Taboo and not show it at all or to make up a new game and show the lid for that? I don't know if we can make something that looks convincingly real.

  4. I think you should make your own 2007 version of the game and call it:


    That's right.


    You're welcome.

  5. That seal-thing is horribly creepy. I really hope it's fake.

  6. Emily,

    the magic of cinema allows you great freedom. people will know it is taboo. no need to mention or show it. audiences nowadays are smart enough.

    and if someone doesn't get it, the principle of the game is pretty easy to follow even if you never heard of taboo all your life.

    not showing and mentioning taboo makes your script even smarter.

  7. I've never played Taboo--I'm lame, I guess--but all you need to do is make sure a person gets it. If what they're talking about is clear then that's what counts.

  8. I was going to make Mr. Peel's comment, but now I guess I don't have to! ;-)

  9. Man, that was quick. At least they are prompt.

    I'm sure you could do a no-logo logo.

    Or, if you are vindictive you could make up your own game and do a line about how much better it is than that crap game Taboo.

    Sometimes I wonder how much of things like that in film and tv are for reasons like that.

  10. Anonymous8:15 PM

    I guess they figure your film is going to cause eight year old kids to use blow and play Taboo. Don't they know they already do that?

    I am sure you will figure out a creative way around the Hasbro speed bump.

  11. Came across your blog through Fun Joel's and been poking around. I'm really enjoying your writing and your adventures. Keep up th great work.

  12. Heck, why bother with any logo at all? The company doesn't want your "product placement," so just leave it out - leaving space for another company to fill the void, perhaps.

    If you have to show game pieces or the box, the fake game idea isn't bad, really. With just a little design work and a decent printer you could quickly convert "Taboo" into darn near any title/logo you wanted it to be. The "OMG" idea is really good, I like that one a lot!

    But without a doubt, the simplest way to go would be, if you don't have to show it or name it, then don't show it and don't name it. Never hurts to save time and a few bucks on props.

  13. I wrote this article for Script a long time ago called Vaguely Specific about this very thing. If you build your story around something you don't control: product, location, star, etc - you risk having that thing pulled out from under you... and then your script may not work.

    Long ago I read a script that may have actually been the first version of Win A DAte With Tad Hamilton - about a small town girl who wins a date with Keaunu Reeves. And bad things happen on the date and the only way to escape the bad guys is to remember scnes from Keanu movies and do what he did in the movie. Keaunu couldn't remember his own movies, and the girl saves his life again and again. Great idea... if you can get Keanu. If not, you have to do a page one rewrite.

    So hide the logo or replace the name and hope it works without.

    - Bill

  14. Thanks for the advice, everybody.

    I think we can find a way to cover the logo and stay true to the script.


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