Now this lawsuit is about to be the speak of the ton.
Abigail Barlow and Emily Bear, creators of “The Unofficial Bridgerton Musical,” have been sued by Netflix for copyright and trademark infringement. The transfer comes simply days after the pair hosted a reside efficiency of the Grammy award-winning musical album at The Kennedy Middle in New York Metropolis on July 26.
“Defendants Abigail Barlow and Emily Bear and their corporations (“Barlow &Bear”) have taken helpful mental property from the Netflix authentic sequence “Bridgerton” to construct a global model for themselves,” the lawsuit claims. “Netflix owns the unique proper to create Bridgerton songs, musicals, or every other spinoff works based mostly on Bridgerton. Barlow &Bear can not take that right–made helpful by others’ laborious work–for themselves, with out permission. But that’s precisely what they’ve executed.”
Barlow and Bear’s musical adaptation of the hit sequence went viral on TikTok final 12 months. It was later launched as an album in September 2021 and took house the award for Greatest Musical Theater Album on the 2022 Grammys.
Bridgerton Season 3: Every little thing to Know
In its lawsuit, Netflix alleges that the duo’s songs copy “liberally and almost identically from “Bridgerton” throughout various authentic parts of expression” together with “plot, tempo, sequence of occasions, temper, setting, and themes.”
Of their grievance, Netflix claimed that they repeatedly advised the pair that “such works weren’t approved,” including, “At every step of the way in which, Barlow &Bear’s representatives repeatedly assured Netflix that they understood Netflix’s place and led Netflix to consider that Netflix could be consulted earlier than Barlow &Bear took steps past streaming their album on-line in audio-only format.”
The streaming service claimed that they first discovered about Barlow and Bear’s NYC efficiency from their representatives this previous June, per courtroom paperwork. The pair are additionally scheduled to carry out the present on the Royal Albert Corridor in London on September 20.
“Barlow &Bear’s ‘The Unofficial Bridgerton Musical’ will not be approved by Netflix, Shondaland, or Julia Quinn,” the lawsuit learn. “And Netflix has by no means given Barlow &Bear permission to create or carry out ‘The Unofficial Bridgerton Musical’ reside, not to mention on the Kennedy Middle or Royal Albert Corridor, or to create new spinoff works based mostly on the Bridgerton mental property.”
Netflix additionally allegedly advised the pair’s consultant that they didn’t need Barlow and Bear to have interaction in “any reside performances” or “different spinoff works that may compete with Netflix’s personal deliberate occasions” together with its world theatrical occasion The Queen’s Ball: A Bridgerton Expertise.
As an alternative, the courtroom paperwork famous that “The Kennedy Middle efficiency went ahead over Netflix’s objections on July 26, 2022, in entrance of a sold-out viewers.”
The corporate additionally claimed that the pair allegedly bought unofficial merchandise on the occasion and, all through the night, “misrepresented to the viewers that they have been utilizing Netflix’s BRIDGERTON trademark ‘with Permission,'” per the grievance.
In consequence, Netflix alleged that Bear and Barlow’s actions will result in “irreparable client confusion about whether or not their performances and merchandise are in actual fact approved.” The streaming service is in search of declaratory aid, injunctive aid, authorized prices, damages and additional aid.
E! Information has reached out to the musical’s creators for remark and has not heard again.
“Bridgerton”‘s government producer Shonda Rhimes and novelist Julia Quinn have additionally spoken out in regards to the lawsuit.
“What began as a enjoyable celebration by Barlow &Bear on social media has changed into the blatant taking of mental property solely for Barlow &Bear’s monetary profit,” Rhimes advised Deadline. “Simply as Barlow &Bear wouldn’t permit others to acceptable their IP for revenue, Netflix can not stand by and permit Barlow &Bear to do the identical with Bridgerton.”
Julia defined that she was initially “flattered and delighted” by Barlow and Bear’s work.
“There’s a distinction, nonetheless, between composing on TikTok and recording and performing for business achieve,” Julia advised the outlet. “I might hope that Barlow &Bear, who share my place as unbiased artistic professionals, perceive the necessity to defend different professionals’ mental property, together with the characters and tales I created within the Bridgerton novels over twenty years in the past.”