$1M Sanction Against Stan Lee’s Daughter Is Reversed by the Ninth Circuit

$1M Sanction Against Stan Lee’s Daughter Is Reversed by the Ninth Circuit

By Steven T. Lowe / March 3, 2022

On December 6, 2021, the Ninth Circuit refused to back a ruling from a California judge that the daughter of the late Marvel comic book writer, Stan Lee, deserved to be sanctioned $1 million for her failed lawsuit against a company her father co-founded, concerning ownership of her father’s name and likeness. JC Lee accused…

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Marvel Files Five (5) Lawsuits to Keep the Rights to the ‘Avengers’ Characters

By Steven T. Lowe / October 26, 2021

On September 24, 2021, Marvel initiated five separate lawsuits in California and New York Federal District Courts against writer Larry Lieber and four other artists (or their heirs) of Marvel Comics (collectively, the “Writers”). The lawsuits were in response to efforts by the Writers to initiate “termination” of their assignments of creative works to Marvel.…

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Daughter to Marvel Mastermind, Stan Lee, Disputes Preposterous’ $1 Million Legal Penalty

By Steven T. Lowe / July 9, 2021

On April 14th, 2021, Joan Celia Lee, otherwise known as “JC” Lee, asked the Ninth Circuit to reopen her lawsuit against her father’s former partners for control of the late comic book legend’s publicity rights. In June of 2020, Judge Otis Wright threw out the lawsuit and fined JC Lee 1 million dollars for frivolous…

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Fortnite Game Developer Doesn’t Miss A Beat in “Running Man” Dance IP Victory

By Steven T. Lowe / July 22, 2020

On May 29, 2020, Judge Paul W. Grimm of the United States District Court for the District of Maryland dismissed a lawsuit that accused the creators behind the popular video game, “Fortnite,” of appropriating the “running man” dance without permission from the former University of Maryland students who came up with the viral trend. In…

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Live Nation Can’t Shake Lawsuit Over Female Artist Country Music Festival

By Steven T. Lowe / July 14, 2020

On May 14, 2020, Live Nation failed to convince a federal judge in the United States District Court for the Middle District of Tennessee to dismiss a $25 million-dollar lawsuit in which concert organizers claimed that Live Nation stole their idea for a country music festival with an all-female lineup. In a complaint filed in…

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Jay-Z, Timbaland, and Numerous Record Labels Obtain a Technical Triumph in Copyright Suit

By Steven T. Lowe / July 10, 2020

On April 16, 2020, Judge J. Paul Oetken of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, dismissed a musician’s lawsuit against artists Jay-Z and Timbaland for unlawfully using parts of the plaintiff’s soul song, finding fatal flaws in the complaint. In the lawsuit filed on May 18, 2019, musician Ernie…

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Steinbeck Family Battle Appealed to Supreme Court

By Steven T. Lowe / June 26, 2020

On March 10, 2020, John Steinbeck’s heirs filed an appeal to the United States Supreme Court concerning a decades-long battle over creative rights to the author’s literary works. In taking up the fight, the California Society of Entertainment Lawyers (“CSEL”), a non-profit organization of attorneys representing creative professionals in the entertainment industry, also submitted an amicus…

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Sweet James is Anything But In Accusing Rival Firm of Brand Theft.

By Steven T. Lowe / June 23, 2020

On April 24, 2020, a leading personal injury law firm in Southern California brought a suit against a rival firm based in Beverly Hills for stealing and misusing its registered “Sweet James” trademark online. In the complaint filed with the United States District Court for the Central District of California, plaintiff Sweet James LLP accused…

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No Justice For Filmmaker in Copyright Clash with Apple

By Steven T. Lowe / June 19, 2020

In yet another casualty for creative professionals in 2020, on May 28, 2020, United States District Court Judge John F. Walter of the Central District of California dismissed a filmmaker’s copyright infringement lawsuit against Apple and M. Night Shyamalan in connection with the Apple TV+ series, “Servant.” Notwithstanding overwhelming similarities between the two works at…

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Ex-Met Strikes Out in New York Court

By Steven T. Lowe / June 16, 2020

On May 29, 2020, New York State Court Judge, Robert D. Kalish, tossed retired professional baseball star Lenny Dykstra’s defamation suit against former teammate, Ron Darling, finding that an unsavory depiction of Dykstra in Darling’s recent book couldn’t further besmirch Dykstra’s “already tarnished reputation.” In July 2019, Dykstra filed and in September 2019, later amended…

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