Carol Burnett is suing Family Guy for $2 million for using her image and name without her permission according to Reuters. Burnett says the show committed copyright infringement by using her cartoon likeness from her variety show, The Carol Burnett Show. Burnett says she has exclusive rights to her name and image and the show did ask her to use either. She asked the show to edit her out of the scene and they have declined which is probably why she went ahead with the lawsuit?
A spokesman for 20th Century Fox Television, which produces “Family Guy,” said on Friday the suit was without merit and that references to Burnett and her show in an 18-second sequence of the cartoon amounted to parody. “‘Family Guy,’ like the ‘Carol Burnett Show,’ is famous for its pop culture parodies and satirical jabs at celebrities,” the studio said in a statement. “We are surprised that Ms. Burnett, who has made a career of spoofing others on television, would go so far as to sue ‘Family Guy’ for a simple bit of comedy.”
As a fan of both shows I think I am going to side with Family Guy on this one. You know that expression “what comes around, goes around” well as the spokesperson said she did the same thing all the time 40 years ago so what is the difference now?