Magician works are subject to copyright protection, granting owners exclusive public performance rights

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An article in the Hollywood Reporter this morning reveals that the silent half of Penn and Teller has prevailed in a lawsuit against Belgian performer Gerard Dodge with regards to a lawsuit against Dodge and his performance of “Shadows”, an act that Teller registered with the US Copyright office in 1983. According to the article:

“While Dogge is correct that magic tricks are not copyrightable, this does not mean that Shadows is not subject to copyright protection,” writes Judge Mahan in his ruling. “Indeed, federal law directly holds ‘dramatic works’ as well as ‘pantomimes’ are subject to copyright protection, granting owners exclusive public performance rights. The mere fact that a dramatic work or pantomime includes a magic trick, or even that a particular illusion is its central feature does not render it devoid of copyright protection.”

READ THE COMPLETE ARTICLE HERE

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