You’re getting sued for what? An E&O odyssey (part 13)

By Bob Tarantino

This post is part of an occasional series highlighting the type of risks that film and TV producers face and that are supposed to be covered by ‘errors and omissions’ (E&O) insurance. The series aims to demonstrate that what might seem to a producer to be unjustified paranoia on the part of their lawyer is, on the contrary, well-founded paranoia. These posts will point to actual lawsuits that have been filed against producers and distributors for various alleged rights infringements (whether copyright, trademark, right of publicity or otherwise) — and that inform the nit-picking approach taken by producer’s counsel.

(I should note for regular readers of the Signal that the fact that we have published three instalments in the ‘You’re getting sued for what? An E&O odyssey’ series in the last 24 hours is purely coincidental. It’s not our fault that so many interesting lawsuits have been filed recently. We swear.)

As reported by the National Post, a Montreal-based artist is suing the producer and broadcaster of the television series 30 Vies — on the basis that footage of a graffiti tag on a building that is incorporated into the opening credits of the series constitutes copyright infringement. The lawsuit evidently seeks $45,000 (£26,500) in damages on the basis that the producer and broadcaster, without permission from the artist, ‘forged, modified, mutilated and broadcast the work’ for commercial purposes. As reported by the Post, ‘an image in which the tag appears below the show’s spray-painted title was reproduced on promotional billboards for the show’s first and second seasons’…

Click on the link below to read the rest of the Dentons briefing.

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