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October 9, 2015

Carol Burnett suing Fox over Family Guy

by Bob Sassone, posted Mar 16th 2007 3:01PM

Carol BurnettThis isn't a very good day for companies under the Fox banner. First Zsa Zsa's husband, and now this.

Veteran comedienne Carol Burnett is suing Twentieth-Century Fox because they used her animated "charwoman" character (the cleaning lady with the mop and bucket from The Carol Burnett Show) in an April, 2006 episode without her permission. She's asking for $2 million.

I think I have to start taking law classes or something, if these celebrity lawsuits keep coming at this pace. I think I remember this episode. It showed the charwoman as the maid at a porn shop. If the show can be sued for pop culture references like this, the lawsuits will never end, since the show has about 20 of them in every episode, and some aren't too flattering.

[via TV Tattle]

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I wish I could e-mail her or call her and tell her how steamed I am that this case was dismissed!
Carol couldn't have a bigger fan that me. I used to enjoy Family Guy but I wonder what I was thinking! Oh yeah, that's right, I used to drink too much too! That must be why.
Family Guy is plain wrong in this. Carol, if you are reading this, please appeal this decision! Maybe the next judge won't be so retarded. By the way, I grew up with Carol Burnett. Her's is comedy that the whole family can watch. I cannot watch Family Guy with my kids in the room. It is so ironic that a show called Family guy is such ugly filth! Carol--you go girl!

May 26 2007 at 12:07 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Who the hell's Carol Barrett?


March 26 2007 at 6:04 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Talk about looking for a payday!!! :D

March 17 2007 at 1:56 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

What a great sense of humor she has!

March 17 2007 at 12:32 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I think it's more copyright infringement than the fact it was used to parody something. That's a trade mark character and they can't use that with out permission.

March 16 2007 at 8:17 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Bitch got bills to pay.

March 16 2007 at 8:00 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Legal nuts go to town. Check out Campbell v. Acuff-Rose Music, where the estate of Roy Orbison sued 2 Live Crew for sampling the song Pretty Woman. It went to the Supreme Court, 2 Live Crew won, despite not having permission.

March 16 2007 at 7:56 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I'm 57 years old and have always admired Carol Burnett. I'm disappointed that she would file a lawsuit like this. She's supposed to have a sense of humor, and she's behaving like an old fuddy-duddy. What a shame.

Those who admire her would not think less of her because of this joke, and those who don't know her work wouldn't even get the reference.

Maybe she's fallen on hard times and needs the money? >grin<

Come on, Carol, suck it up. Nobody sued you in the many parodies you did, including Sunset Boulevard and Gone with the Wind. You can dish it, but you can't seem to take it.

March 16 2007 at 6:26 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

This will be interesting, because "Family Guy"'s idea of "satire" frequently is to replicate the original as closely as possible, rather than exaggerate it or change it in some way. So it could be argued that this is just imitation, and not satire at all.

March 16 2007 at 5:45 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
BC McKinney

"From any angle it's protected speech.?

Fair use, parody, and satire only cover the words and possibly mannerisms. If they actually used her likeness without her permission, the courts will be friendlier, although it's not guaranteed.

March 16 2007 at 4:40 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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