SOFA Entertainment, Inc. v. Dodger Productions, Inc., et al, No. 10-56535 (9th Cir. 2013)Annotate this Case
In this copyright infringement suit, SOFA claimed that Dodger infringed its copyright in using a seven-second clip of Ed Sullivan's introduction of the Four Seasons on "The Ed Sullivan Show" and could not justify its unlicensed use of the clip as "fair use." The clip was used in Dodger's musical about the Four Seasons, "Jersey Boys," to mark a historical point in the band's career. The court held that, by using the clip for its biographical significance, Dodger has imbued it with new meaning and did so without usurping whatever demand there was for the original clip. Dodger was entitled to prevail on its fair use defense as a mater of law and to retain the attorney's fees award granted by the district court.