In an irony of a kind not seen since yesterday, when I fell asleep in a screening of a film called Who Needs Sleep?, filmmaker Kirby Dick has accused the MPAA of illegally copying This Film is Not Yet Rated, his documentary about the ratings board which premieres here at Sundance tomorrow night. Dick's lawyer has contacted the MPAA demanding that they return all copies of the film in their posession, and explain who authorized the reproductions, and why. The MPAA in turn admits that they made the copies, but insist that their doing so doesn't qualify as illegal piracy. "We made a copy of Kirby's movie because it had implications for our employees," MPAA VP Kori Bernards told the LA Times, before essentially accusing Dick of stalking MPAA workers. "We were concerned about the raters and their families." Dick showed the Times a copy of an email exchange he had with the Board, in which he told the MPAA he would only submit a copy of his film to be rated if they promised not to copy or distribute it. In turn, a board rep told Kirk that "the confidentiality of your film ... is our first priority. Please feel assure (sic) that your film is in good hands."

In other Dick news, IFC confirmed today that they've sold the UK broadcast rights to the doc to the BBC.