Jenner & Block

Jenner & Block Secures Third Circuit Victory in Empire Copyright Dispute

On August 28, Jenner & Block secured a victory when the US Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit affirmed a Pennsylvania federal court’s dismissal of a copyright infringement lawsuit against client Twenty-First Century Fox and other parties over the hit television show Empire.

The initial complaint alleged that the series infringed on a pilot episode the plaintiff produced and gave to Empire’s co-creator at a film festival in 2008. In April 2017, US District Judge Joel Slomsky dismissed all claims with prejudice, a decision the plaintiff appealed.

Law360 named the firm a Legal Lion (subscription required) for the Third Circuit decision.

Partners Richard L. Stone and Andrew J. Thomas and Associate Andrew G. Sullivan represented Fox and other defendants at the trial and appellate levels.  This is the firm’s second victory this month involving Empire after an Illinois federal judge dismissed claims that the show infringed on a book.