Don't know if anybody else has picked this up but, as we know, Prince, when he did Batman, had to sign the tracks over, for both publishing and copyright, to the WB film division of the time.
Since then, I think, the film and records WB are not just separate divisions but separate companies after several cycles of sale and reorganisation.
The fact that the imminent compilation contains tracks from Batman for the first time indicates a partnership between these two companies which were formerly divisions of the same WB and may indicate that what has been assembled on 4EVER (including artwork) and PR+ represents that' to which they remain entitled to exploit without approval from Prince/NPG. I reckon therefore that 'Moonbeam Levels' has probably been in Warner entitlements since Prince handed them a selection of vault items in the mid-90's.
I'm not up on all of the information (as opposed to hearsay) about the post-2014 'return to Warner' but assume that WB would have retained an option, at the very least, on licensing the pre-Symbol period, hence their vinyl reissues.
Although I have speculated a 'snub' in the exclusion of post-Symbol material, it may be the case that earlier in the dispute, everything after TMBGITW had already been subject, at the very least, to Prince's 'Okay' for exploitation.
After 1993, Prince was taking all sorts of steps to secure ownership on his farm 'in the plantation' and part of the reason he went so full-on against bootlegging and copyright violations may be because, under the WB/Controversy deal, his recordings came under some degree of 'ownership' by these record and publishing companies upon their material creation. If you don't want to hand over your new painting until it's finished, you might be worried about your art dealer hearing you've been painting it, especially if you accidentally dropped the working title on someone.
When someone is prepared to go as far as re-recording tracks in order to own 'new masters' (as Prince at least embarked upon, announcing the venture publicly), then it's a no-brainer to assume he was also wanting to keep close to his chest what he was up to in terms of creating work, order to prevent 'entitled owners' from automatically rounding up his latest "children".
This is the practical reason why Prince stopped his previously customary spilling of tapes around his cars and to collaborators and generally locking down on possibilities for leaking.
I believe that before 1993 Prince was actively interested in building his 'bootlegged' catalogue, being as he had once talked about (I'm paraphrasing) 'having to own everything James Brown did even if it wasn't out' in regard of his own use of bootlegs. He wasn't of course liking that bootleggers were profitting but who likes that other than bootleggers?
I've always felt, and I'm not alone, that The Black Album was less about his reported/claimed 'change of heart' than his deliberate, genial bid to enter and top 'the bootleg charts', as did indeed occur until WB issued it officially. The Black Album consolidated the work done by his his 'White Album', the official Sign of The Times in establishing Prince as a 'serious artist' worthy to join the pantheon and one of the entry requirements is that your 'Hard Day's Night/ Purple Rain' screamybop period has passed over and a reputation has been built via bootleg 'chart-position'. Prince, with The Black Album becoming 'most bootlegged album ever' had 'killed them again' so, regardless of the usual artist protestations against bootlegging, Prince was interested, at least for a time, in the reputation-building afforded by that 'chart'.
But, generally, after 1993, there was much more at stake for Prince than the money being earned by bootleggers (due anyway to take a dive as web-trading emerged). What was at stake for Prince was the security of new creations upon mere reports of existence of which WB/Controversy had entitlements at a time when he wanted a new framework.
I've also drawn parallels between Prince's NPG/WB situation and The Beatles Apple/EMI situation (to date, not just in the 60's) in that, after long struggle (The Beatles' taking decades) both of the artists used their companies 'holding and acquisition', including reacquisition of rights. In the case of Apple, some projects, (like the reissue of the 'Let It Be' movie) have been interminably delayed while they try to get all the rights under their control.
What NPG will now need to do is develop a team which has membership akin to that around Apple Corps Ltd, engineers, producers, project managers whose knowledge of the artist's work and intentions with it is attuned. Again, it took Apple Corps a loooong time to build this and now Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr, together with the wives of their deceased band members, sit to receive, consider and approve project ideas for development 'in-house' toward outward licensing and release.
I believe that NPG was developed for the same purpose and will gradually start to function along the same lines combining integrity, working familiarity with the material, intentions and processes of the artist and new ideas for exploitation that are in line with same.
Certainly there is no shortage of potential for eventual collaboration to this effect among those who have worked with Prince but it will take time and, since the supposed financial threats to Prince's estate and business now looks uninformed to careful analysts (some of the very best here on the Org!), time is on the side of Art.
I actually really hope that 4EVER and PR+ bomb in terms of sales as it will get the hand of profit-commerce offa the crib.
[Edited 11/1/16 0:53am]