Shelley Films Ltd v Rex Features Ltd: ChD 1994

Still photographs had been taken of a forthcoming film, which the producers had taken steps to keep confidential.
Held: A chancery judge may grant an injunction to restrain the publication of photographs taken surreptitiously in circumstances such that the photographer is to be taken to have known that the occasion was a private one and that the taking of photographs by outsiders was not permitted.
Mr Martin Mann QC said: ‘whether or not equity imposes an obligation to keep information confidential depends upon a great many factors often unique to the case in which it is said to do so. However, most cases will have certain common constituents, namely, the existence of a body of information which a plaintiff wishes to keep confidential for the protection of some lawful interest of his, a defendant coming into possession of such information in circumstances in which he actually knows (or is fixed by operation of law with knowledge of) or ought as a reasonable person to know the plaintiff intends to be kept confidential, a detriment actual or potential to the plaintiff from publication, the non-availability of such information to the public and the absence of any public interest in disclosure.’


Mr Martin Mann QC


[1994] EMLR 134


England and Wales

Cited by:

CitedDouglas etc v Hello! Ltd etc ChD 11-Apr-2003
The claimants were to be married. They sold the rights to publish photographs of their wedding, but various of the defendants took and published unauthorised pictures.
Held: The claimants had gone to lengths to ensure the commercial value of . .
CitedDouglas and others v Hello! Ltd and others (No 3) CA 18-May-2005
The principal claimants sold the rights to take photographs of their wedding to a co-claimant magazine (OK). Persons acting on behalf of the defendants took unauthorised photographs which the defendants published. The claimants had retained joint . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Media, Intellectual Property, Equity

Updated: 26 July 2022; Ref: scu.181407