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The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, in a ruling during the summer by District Judge John J. Koetl, held that a series of silkscreen paintings and prints by Andy Warhol based on a photograph of music legend Prince taken by Lynn Goldsmith constituted a transformative fair use. The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts v. Goldsmith, 382 F.Supp. 3d 312 (S.D.N.Y.). In so holding, Judge Koetl relied on the 2013 Second Circuit decision holding that an “appropriation artist,” Richard Prince (no relation to the musician Prince), made a transformative and fair use of photographs taken by Patrick Cariou. Cariou v Prince, 714 F.3d 694 (2d Cir. 2013). Cariou has been criticized for its characterization of the changes made by Richard Prince as transformative, a criticism that Lynn Goldsmith no doubt will be making in her pending appeal of Judge Koetl‘s decision.
By Stan Soocher
Disputes over film financing agreements are common, but there are few court decisions that address film financing dustups involving §10(b) of the federal Securities Exchange Act. Now the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida has issued a ruling that addresses the pleading requirements for alleging a §10(b) violation, in litigation between an investor and a film production company.
By Michael S. Poster
The purpose of a Weinstein clause is to provide assurance that the target company (including its officers and executives) is not a hotbed of sexual harassment or a ticking time bomb of claims waiting to explode. This article on drafting and negotiating Weinstein clauses should help entertainment and media deal teams balance these risks.
By Scott Graham
There was much harmony along with a few discordant notes as an en banc panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit took up the copyright case involving Led Zeppelin’s “Stairway to Heaven.”
By Michael F. Snyder
The ownership of intellectual property rights can be at the core of legal disputes involving pop culture icons. Considering the goodwill, effort and money spent in building a brand, character or commercial impression, it is not surprising that parties to intellectual property agreements find themselves revisiting their arrangements over time. That is what is happening in two recent federal lawsuits, one in New York involving a beloved figure in Philadelphia sports and the other in California focused on the Old Spice cologne commercial jingle.