24
May/11

Copyrightability of Unauthorized (but Lawful) Derivative Work Starring Keanu Reeves As Johnny Utah


Plaintiff wrote parody of the Keanu Reeves masterwork ‘Point Break‘ (which also marked the zenith, I might add, of Lori Petty’s work).  The work was produced as a play by defendants, who decided to stop paying plaintiff royalties, arguing that plaintiff could have no rights in the parody as she had no rights in the underlying Point Break script.

Not correct.   The creator of an unauthorized but lawful derivative work, such as a parody, can obtain copyright in the protectable new derivative material.  Motion to dismiss denied.

 
Decision Point Break

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