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Warner Bros. Discovery, CNN and other defendants have been hit with an employment lawsuit in New York Supreme Court, Queens County. The court case was filed by Valli Kane & Vagnini on behalf of a production assistant who contends that the defendants racially discriminated against her by casting her in a crime scene reenactment for the TV show Forensic Files II alongside two other Black employees despite the plaintiff not being an actor. The complaint also accuses the defendants of intentional infliction of emotional distress because they failed to adhere to safety protocols in connection with a prop gun, resulting in potentially being in the line of fire of the New York Police. The case is Davis v. Warner Bros. Discovery, 722064/2023. … Universal Music Group and other plaintiffs sued Anthropic PBC in Tennessee Middle District Federal Court over copyright claims. The lawsuit alleges that Anthropic’s AI models generate identical or nearly identical copies of the publishers’ song lyrics, infringing the plaintiffs’ copyrights. The complaint was brought by Riley & Jacobsen, Oppenheim & Zebrak and Cowan, Liebowitz & Latman. The case is Concord Music Group Inc. v. Anthropic PBC, 3:23-cv-01092. … Musician Gene Simmons, Live Nation Entertainment, Marriott International and other defendants have been sued for wrongful death lawsuit in California Superior Court, Los Angeles County. The court action, brought by Kabateck on behalf of the estate of Francis S. Stueber and other plaintiffs, accuses the band KISS of having lax COVID-19 protocols during its 2021 End of the Road Tour, leading to the decedent’s death from COVID-19. The case is The Estate of Stueber III v. McGhee, 23SMCV04865. … Cloud V Enterprises was sued for copyright infringement in California Central District Federal Court. The complaint, filed by the Sanders Law Group on behalf of Watson Music Group LLC, accuses the defendant of the unauthorized use of the plaintiff’s musical composition on the defendant’s social media account. The case is Watson Music Group LLC v. Cloud V Enterprises, 2:23-cv-08761. … Applause Licensing, a Florida LLC, and Curt Gooch were slapped with a copyright infringement lawsuit in California Central District Federal Court. The lawsuit was brought by Levinson Arshonsky & Kurtz LLP on behalf of Gene Simmons, Kiss Catalog Ltd. and Paul Stanley, the owners of the intellectual property of the iconic recording group Kiss. The complaint contends that the defendants claimed to be the copyright owners of filmed Kiss concert footage. The case is Kiss Catalog Ltd. v. Applause Licensing LLC, 2:23-cv-08751. … Universal Music Group and other defendants were hit with a copyright lawsuit in California Central District Federal Court. The case, brought by Doniger / Burroughs on behalf of Pierre Orpheus Dejournette (p/k/a PD Beats) seeks a declaration that the plaintiff co-owns the song “Not Enough” and is owed a share of the revenue from licensing or use of copyright of the song. The case is Dejournette v. Universal Music Group Inc., 2:23-cv-08739. … Live Nation Entertainment was slapped with a personal injury lawsuit in Florida Circuit Court, Palm Beach County. The lawsuit was brought by Bodden & Bennett Law Group on behalf of a ticketholder for the March 2023 Rib Round Up live music event. The plaintiff alleges she was physically attacked by other concertgoers and that Live Nation personnel did nothing to intervene. The case is Delena v. Live Nation Worldwide Inc., 50-2023-CA-014703. … Warner Bros. Entertainment was hit with a product liability lawsuit in California Superior Court, Los Angeles County. The lawsuit was filed by Russakow & Tan, Dunlap Bennett & Ludwig and Whitbeck Bennett PLLC on behalf of a family who alleges that their three-year-old had his eye impaled by the defendant’s “Harry Potter” wand pen. The case is Perry v. Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc., 23BBCV02390. … Bryan Fletcher and Garrett Fletcher, the creators of online video game Rainbow Friends, filed a copyright infringement lawsuit in Illinois Northern District Federal Court. The court action, filed for the Fletchers by Greer, Burns & Crain, takes aim at unidentified e-commerce retailers over the alleged sale of counterfeit Rainbow Friends merchandise. The case is Fletcher v. The Partnerships and Unincorporated Associations Identified on Schedule A, 1:23-cv-14961. … Netflix has been named in a shareholder derivative action in Delaware Court of Chancery. The action, brought by deLeeuw Law on behalf of Madison Kyle Realty Corp., accuses certain officers and directors of being misleading regarding the company’s subscriber growth while selling stock at inflated prices. The complaint, which is not publicly available, is Madison Kyle Realty Corp. v. Barton, 2023-1033. … Vinson & Elkins filed a $5 million lawsuit in California Superior Court, Los Angeles County, on behalf of WarpSpeed Trading. The court action targets AVY Entertainment and BTSE Holdings, a cryptocurrency exchange platform, for negligent misrepresentation. According to the complaint, AVY solicited millions of dollars from investors by claiming to have the resources to design and release a beta version of an NFT-based video game by May 2022 but knowingly lacked the funds and manpower to do so and has failed to deliver any product. The case is Warpspeed Trading v. Avy Entertainment Inc., 23STCV25010. … Documentary filmmaker David Garrett Byars and his company DGB Films have been sued by Vacationland LLC for breach of contract in New York Supreme Court, New York County. The suit, brought by Gordon Law, accuses Byars of breaching an agreement for personal services as a director, producer and photographer by disseminating confidential information, disparaging the plaintiff and misappropriating the plaintiff’s intellectual property. The case is Vacationland LLC v. DGB Films Inc. … Pryor Cashman filed a breach-of-contract lawsuit in Florida Circuit Court, Miami-Dade County, on behalf of Spanish Broadcasting System. The lawsuit targets Voz Media, an American Spanish-language news-media firm, and other defendants for allegedly misrepresenting that Vox could afford $64 million to purchase Spanish Broadcasting System and did not need financing. The case is Spanish Broadcasting System Inc. v. Orlando Salazar, 2023-024520-CA-01. … Ramones Productions Inc., the business entity for the punk rock band, filed a trademark infringement lawsuit in Illinois Northern District Federal Court over the alleged sale of counterfeit goods. The suit, filed by Greer, Burns & Crain, pursues claims against unidentified online retailers for allegedly selling apparel and other merchandise featuring the band’s trademarks. The case is Ramones Productions Inc. v. The Partnerships and Unincorporated Associations Identified on Schedule A, 1:23-cv-14809. … Schenck, Price, Smith & King filed a lawsuit in New York Supreme Court, New York County, accusing GDA Hockey and Brian Shnuriger of misappropriating a $200,000 investment. The suit was brought on behalf of James Mackey, who asserts that he had invested in GDA Management, which Shnuriger later allegedly converted to GDA Hockey, stripping the former of all its assets without authorization. The suit also claims that Schnuriger withdrew players from Mackey’s Philadelphia Hockey Club in retaliation for confronting him about the alleged misuse of the investment. The case is Mackey v. Brian Schnuriger. … Musical group Sick of It All filed a trademark infringement lawsuit in New York Southern District Federal Court against Kejuan Muchita a/k/a Havoc and the estate of Albert Jackson Johnson a/k/a Prodigy, former members of the hip-hop duo Mobb Deep. The suit, brought by Chiesa Shahinian & Giantomasi, accuses the defendants of misappropriating the plaintiff’s trademarked dragon logo to sell hats, t-shirts and other apparel. According to the complaint, this is the third time over the course of decades that Sick Of It All has demanded that Mobb Deep cease misappropriating its intellectual property. The case is Bush Baby Zamagate Inc. v. Chapter 4 Corp., 1:23-cv-08946. … Sam Wineman, a film director best known for his work on horror short film The Quiet Room, brought an employment discrimination lawsuit against television writer and producer Bryan Fuller, AMC Networks Inc., its streaming-service platform Shudder and other defendants in California Superior Court, Los Angeles County. The court case, filed by Good Gustafson Aumais and Atkins & Associates, accuses AMC of removing Wineman from the production of Queer for Fear, a docuseries that explores the history of the LGBTQ+ community in the horror and thriller genres, after he complained to the production team about unwanted sexual touching and harassment from Fuller. According to the suit, Fuller subjected Wineman to a hostile work environment by verbally abusing the plaintiff during work meetings, sending unwanted sexting messages and denying his creative requests on the show. The suit further contends that Wineman was forced to go to Fuller’s house and apologize to him by a member of Steakhaus Productions expressing “Fuller is the money, and we have to keep the money happy.” The case is Wineman v. AMC Networks Inc., 23STCV24224. … Pink Floyd (1987) Ltd., the business entity for the band, filed a trademark infringement lawsuit in Illinois Northern District Federal Court over the alleged sale of counterfeit goods. The suit, filed by Keith Vogt Ltd., pursues claims against unidentified online retailers for allegedly selling apparel and other merchandise featuring the band’s trademarks. The case is Pink Floyd (1987) Limited v. The Partnerships and Unincorporated Associations Identified on Schedule A, 1:23-cv-14543. … Ubisoft Entertainment filed a trademark infringement lawsuit in Illinois Northern District Federal Court over the alleged sale of counterfeit goods related to the popular video game Assassin’s Creed. The suit, filed by Hughes Socol Piers Resnick & Dym, pursues claims against unidentified e-commerce operators. The case is Ubisoft Entertainment S.A v. The Individuals, Corporations, Limited Liability Companies, Partnerships, and Unincorporated Associations Identified on Schedule A Hereto, 1:23-cv-14536. … SportsCastr Inc. d/b/a PANDA Interactive, which offers livestreaming services for the sports industry, filed a patent infringement lawsuit in Texas Eastern District Federal Court against Genius Sports, which collects, manages and monetizes sports data. The suit, brought by King & Spalding, alleges that the defendant’s integration of stat tracking and betting data into its livestreams infringes the plaintiff’s patents. The case is SportsCastr Inc. v. Genius Sports Ltd., 2:23-cv-00471.
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By Stan Soocher
Reversing and remanding, the Ninth Circuit emphasized: “The district court’s approach of reducing choreography to ‘poses’ is fundamentally at odds with the way we analyze copyright claims for other art forms, like musical compositions.”
By Katherine A. Baker, Jeffrey M. Kelly and Joshua L. Kirschner
The gaming and wagering sector has begun to cross paths with artificial intelligence technology in ways both predictable and unforeseen. As with other industries, AI technology inevitably has found its way into various components of the gaming experience. What is striking, however, is how AI is revolutionizing gaming for operators, regulators, suppliers and patrons alike.
By Jeffrey Campolongo and Scott M. Badami
Does the ability to receive remuneration for being a college athlete mean that the students are deemed employees of the university? Do employment laws apply? Are labor laws enforced? Does OSHA enter the equation? What about HIPAA concerns relating to medical conditions and injuries?
By Entertainment Law & Finance Staff
A look at moves among attorneys, law firms, companies and other players in entertainment law.