Lombardo et al v. Dr. Seuss Enterprises, L.P.
||Matthew Lombardo and Who's Holiday Limited Liability Company
||Dr. Seuss Enterprises, L.P.
||December 27, 2016
||New York Southern District Court
||Foley Square Office
||Alvin K. Hellerstein
|Nature of Suit:
|Cause of Action:
|Jury Demanded By:
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|September 15, 2017
OPINION AND ORDER GRANTING DECLARATORY JUDGMENT FOR PLAINTIFFS AND DISMISSING DEFENDANT'S COUNTERCLAIMS re: 44 MOTION for Judgment on the Pleadings [Fed. R. Civ. P 12(c)], filed by Who's Holiday Limited Liability Company, Matthew Lombardo, 48 MOTION to File Amicus Brief, filed by Dramatists Legal Defense Fund., Motions terminated: 44 MOTION for Judgment on the Pleadings [Fed. R. Civ. P 12(c)], filed by Who's Holiday Limited Lia bility Company, Matthew Lombardo, 48 MOTION to File Amicus Brief, filed by Dramatists Legal Defense Fund. For the reasons stated herein, plaintiffs' motion is granted. The Play constitutes fair use and therefore does not infr inge defendant's copyright in Grinch or related trademarks. Defendant's counterclaims are dismissed. Defendant's state law unfair competition and trademark dilution claims are dismissed for the same reasons. See Kregos v. Associated Press, 795 F. Supp. 1325, 1336 (S.D.N.Y. 1992) ("[T]he standards for§ 43(a) claims under the Lanham Act and unfair competition claims under New York law are virtually the same."); Charles Atlas, Ltd. v. DC Comics, Inc., 112 F. Supp. 2d 330, 341(S.D.N.Y.2000) (finding risk of confusion "clearly outweighed by the public interest in parodic expression" and dismissing state law trademark dilution and unfair competition claims "because they are based on the same perm issible conduct."); Yankee Publishing, 809 F.Supp. at 282 (finding that the "same First Amendment considerations that limit a cause of action under the Lanham Act apply also to a cause of action under New York law."). For these rea sons, plaintiffs' motion for judgment on the pleadings and dismissal of defendant's counterclaims is granted. The Clerk shall terminate the motion, and all related motions (Dkt. Nos. 44, 48). The Play constitutes fair use and does not infr inge defendant's copyright in Grinch. The Clerk shall enter judgment granting judgment to plaintiffs and dismissing the counterclaims, and shall tax costs in favor of plaintiffs. The Clerk shall mark the case closed, and as further set forth herein. (Signed by Judge Alvin K. Hellerstein on 9/15/2017) (ras)
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