This post is part of an occasional series highlighting the type of risks which film and TV producers face and which are supposed to be covered by E&O insurance. The series aims to demonstrate that what might seem to a producer to be unjustified paranoia on the part of their lawyer is, in fact, well-founded paranoia. These posts will point to actual lawsuits which have been filed against film/TV producers for various alleged rights infringements (whether copyright, trade-mark, right of publicity, or otherwise) – and which inform the nit-picking approach taken by producer’s counsel.
As reported by Hollywood, Esq., a model who appeared in a Revlon print ad in the early 1960s is suing the distributors of the TV series Mad Men in L.A. Superior Court because her image (taken from that print ad) is seen in the opening title sequence of the series. Gita Hall May is seeking unspecified damages “suffered as a result of the unauthorized use” of her likeness which “appears more prominently and directly than any other image in that sequence” (Successful Former Revlon Model Is Suing ‘Mad Men’).