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Matlock Needs CLE on IP

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2 Responses

  1. Copyright law could be implicated, but it’s a stretch. There are cases out there that protect the “characters” of a story – I’m thinking of Rocky. This is the branch of copyright that might apply to fan fiction.

    The rub here is:

    1. As noted, the “character” is Andy Taylor, not Andy Griffith;

    2. The “new” Andy Griffith is running for Sheriff in real life, not in a “copied story” (though perhaps some of the sheriff ads might be implicated); and

    3. Does Andy Griffith personally own the copyright to all of the Andy Griffith show scripts and/or shows?

    Even though it is a longshot, I wouldn’t call it bad lawyering – I would call it creative lawyering.

  2. arthur says:

    There was an approximately similar case a few years ago where Kareen Abdul-Jabbar sued the younger professional football player Karim Abdul-Jabbar. Karim claimed that he took the name for religious, not marketing reasons (Kareem had also adopted the name as an adult). the case settled when Karim agreed not to market products with the name “Abdul-Jabbar.”

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