If you live in the U.S.A., you’ve probably seen many Walmarts nationwide. While not every Walmart provides copy services, there are more than enough to meet your needs. But will Walmart make copies of film posters even if the material is copyrighted?
Generally, you should not make copies of copyrighted materials at Walmart. Even if you get a staff member willing to make your copies, you shouldn’t. Copyright violations are a serious offense and can cost you a lot in legal fees and fines.
Keep reading if you want to know all you need to know about legally making movie poster copies!
Before we proceed, it’s important to note that I am not a legal professional or authorized to give legal advice. We recommend you seek a licensed legal professional if you need legal counseling.
Does Walmart Offer Printing Services?
Walmart offers in-store and online printing services. You can either log onto Walmart’s website and select the “photo services” tab under the services option. This will take you to a webpage with the option to print photos, copies, or print images on t-shirts, mugs, etc.
Walmart has over 10,000 stores across the United States, but only some stores offer printing services. To order a print on the Walmart website, follow these steps:
- Select the service tab on Walmart’s website (Walmart.com)
- In the drop-down list, select the “photo services” option
- You’ll notice as you hover the mouse over this option that to the right, there are several print variety options
- We recommend selecting the prints or photo center options for movie posters
- This will redirect you to the Walmart online print shop
- Select the sizing and personalization to meet your needs
- You should get an email notifying you when the print is ready
Alternatively, you can download the Walmart One Hour Photo App. This app allows you to make your orders conveniently from your phone.
Walmart’s printing services are relatively cheap. A 4X4 print will cost $.38 for 1-hour pickup and $.18 for home delivery. However, larger images (including poster-sized photos) cost around $2-3.00 for an 8X10.
Unfortunately, they don’t offer anything larger than 8X10.
Here is a list of traditional movie poster sizes: Top 5 Movie Poster Sizes with Templates & Dimensions.
Is it Legal to Make Copies of Movie Posters At Walmart?
Walmart can not make copies of images that are under copyright. Copyright materials like movie posters are protected against illegal replications or distribution.
Even if you hire a photographer to take pictures, you can’t legally make copies of the photos if they still possess the copyright.
However, there are a few ways you can legally copy movie posters. These include:
- Fair use
- Copyright no longer applies
- Public domain
Sometimes images, slogans, books, and other copyright materials are in the public domain. Public domain refers to intellectual or artistic content that is not protected by copyright law and can be used freely. This can occur for the following reasons:
- The copyright expired
- The images or content was created by the U.S. Federal Government
- The owner released the content to the public
- It didn’t qualify for copyright
If the image you’re copying is in the public domain, then making copies is fine. However, unfortunately, most movie posters don’t qualify as images in the public domain since most get the copyright renewed.
Really old movie posters made before the 1960s are the safest bet. Most movies made before this time are no longer protected by copyright and can be legally copied; however, you must do your due diligence and confirm this on your own.
Otherwise, you can use and copy movie posters under fair use laws. Fair use laws allow users to copy, use, or display copyright materials for specific purposes. These uses include:
- News reports
You might need to prove either fair use or public domain. Walmart can refuse to make copies if they believe you violate copyright law.
You will want to read Is It Illegal To Print Movie Posters? (Don’t Get Caught Doing This)
How Can You Get Permission to Make Copies of Movie Posters at Walmart?
You should request permission from the copyright holder to legally use or copy a film poster. The owners include movie studios or production companies. Writing to these organizations or emailing them to request permission is the best method.
Requesting permission isn’t very complicated, but it can be challenging to locate the copyright holders if you don’t know where to look. There are several ways to identify the copyright holders, including:
- Search the U.S. Copyright database
- On the back of the poster
- In the movie credits
Copyright holders usually have their names or corporations listed on the back of the poster. For example, you might see 20th Century Fox, Paramount, or other production studios listed on the poster indicating ownership.
Writing a letter or email requesting permission to make copies is the best way to guarantee you’re doing things legally.
Having written permission will also allow you to present proof when you request copies on the Walmart website or in-store.
What Are Other Ways to Legally Print Movie Posters at Walmart?
There are really only three ways to legally make copies at Walmart. These include having written permission, only using images in the public domain, or using them under fair use laws.
Make sure you can show proof of your rights to make a copy.
Can You Print Movie Images on T-Shirts and Other Media at Walmart to Sell?
Walmart offers several printing services, including images on mugs and t-shirts. However, depending on the image and copyright restrictions, you might be unable to sell these products. The safest way to sell these items is to own the images or contract with the studio.
You should never try to sell copies of copyrighted materials without express written permission. This permission is slightly different from requesting permission to make copies for personal use.
You need to have a licensing agreement with the copyright holders so you can not only copy but also sell them.
Walmart does offer mug design services. Depending on the complexity, these services cost between $8-20.00 per mug. However, these mugs are usually made for personal use, like gifting to family members.
Walmart’s a pretty ubiquitous store scattered across the nation. It’s one of the best places to make copies, thanks to its many locations.
However, making copies of movie posters can be pretty tricky. As a rule of thumb, always ask permission before making the copy! Also, if there isn’t a Walmart nearby, you can always try Walgreens.
Check out Poster Grind for all your movie and copyright questions! And here are a few more articles you will enjoy.
- How To Get Movie Posters For Free?
- Can I Use Movie Posters In Youtube Videos?
- Are Movie Posters Media Mail? (Consider This)
Photography Axis: How big is an 8X10 photo
Quora: Is it illegal to print my own movie poster as wall decor for my restaurant? As long as I’m not selling them, then I’m good, right?
Copyright Laws: WHAT IS THE PUBLIC DOMAIN?
Quora: I am interested in doing movie poster prints. How do I go about obtaining the proper license to produce the posters?
Poster Grind: How To Get Copyright Permissions For Your Fan Art Movie Posters
Quora: Can I legally sell illustrations (on prints/t-shirts) I design that feature TV shows, movies, songs, bands, etc.?