Daniel Webster get ready you may have to defend Netflix against the Satanic Temple in their lawsuit against the streaming service and Warner Bros. for a whopping $50 million.
The temple is serious about their copyrighted goat-headed statue Baphomet and claims the Netflix Original The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina used it (and misrepresented it) without their permission.
Bruce Lederman who is representing the temple said in a complaint filed in federal court on Thursday that the case is a “textbook example of the hornbook explanation of copyright protection that copyright law protects unique expressions, but not the ideas themselves.”
He adds: ”What makes this case particularly striking and significant is that it arises in the context of Defendants who are highly sophisticated media production and distribution companies which blatantly misappropriated Plaintiff’s unique expression of an idea even though they have a long history of vigorously protecting their own intellectual property.”
The statue in question is based on the Eliphas Levi interpretation of the “historical deity” which the Satanic Temple says it created “to promote First Amendment values of separation of church and state and equal protection,” reports Deadline.
The whole case has been brewing for the past week after the group saw a similar looking portrayal of their effigy in “Sabrina” and rumors began to circulate that the church was not happy. A demand letter was sent to both Netflix and Warner Bros. telling them to remove any Baphomet imagery based off of their statue.
For purposes of comparison… pic.twitter.com/AZJvmq1Cks
— Lucien Greaves (@LucienGreaves) October 30, 2018
However today the companies were officially served.
“Yes, we are taking legal action regarding #TheChillingAdventuresofSabrina appropriating our copyrighted monument design to promote their asinine Satanic Panic fiction,” wrote spokesman and co-founder of The Satanic Temple Lucien Greaves on Twitter in late October.
But it’s not only the image that the temple is mad about, it’s the way it’s used on the show.
“These original expressions are misappropriated through use of an obvious copy which is featured prominently throughout the Sabrina Series and the central focal point of the school in the Sabrina Series which represents evil antagonists.”
They explain further, “prominent use of symbol as the central focal point of the school associated with evil, cannibalism and murder blurs and tarnishes the TST Baphomet with Children as a mark of TST.”
Neither Netflix nor Warner Bros. have given an official statement on the lawsuit.