Most recently, lawyers for the TV sitcom, Three's Company, have threatened playwright David Adjmi, because his newest play -- 3C -- parodies that old show.
Fortunately, playwrights' groups and decent law firms are rallying to defend Adjmi against the mega-rich Hollywood bullies.
Reporting for Playbill (July 18, 2012), Adam Hetrick writes:
Playwright David Adjmi's dark comedy 3C, which takes a page from the 1970s sitcom "Three's Company," has come under fire from lawyers representing DLT Entertainment, the company that owns the popular television series.
According to a report in the New York Times, Adjmi was contacted by Kenyon & Kenyon, the lawyers representing DLT Entertainment, who sent a cease-and-desist letter citing copyright infringement, listing 17 points of similarity between the play and the sitcom. 3C uses a scenario similar to "Three's Company," but explores darker implications of American culture in that time. The now-closed production ran June 6-July 14 at the Rattlestick Playwrights Theater.
A stage adaptation of "Three's Company" is in the works and DLT felt Adjmi's play was damaging to the property. The series also has a life in syndicated reruns.
The correspondence from the lawyers also stated that the production could not be extended past its July 14 closing date, that no future productions could be performed and the script could not be published. Box office figures were also requested in addition to a written agreement from Adjmi that he would comply with their demands.
Read the rest of Hetrick's report.