It seems like I have had a lot of conversations with people lately about movie and book titles. No, not in the form of trivia questions; I mean conversations about how so many movie titles just seem to sound the same. Or a related topic: how can a movie studio come up with a title for their movie when there are already so many other movie titles out there? In a universe with a finite list of words and phrases, how does a “Title”ist (fancy moniker for somebody who writes film titles, according to me) expand their wings?

Here is just a short list of titles that overlap:
28 days vs. 28 Days Later
Monsters Inc. v. Monsters Ball
Aristocats vs. Aristocrats
Black Sheep vs. Black Sheep

But wait a second: aren’t names and such (anything that is a creative work) protected by copyright? Nope, not really short phrases, of which titles, be it a book or movie title, falls victim. Names and short phrases such as “Live, love laugh” just don’t exhibit enough creativity to be protected in the same way that a full-length book or movie is. Or at least that’s what the Copyright Office has specifically declared in its decree that all words embody a “minimum amount of authorship in the form of original literary, musical, pictorial, or graphic expression.”