“Midnight in Paris” won Woody Allen the Oscar for Best Original Screenplay this year, but not everyone was happy with the film.The estate of Nobel and Pulitzer Prize winning writer William Faulkner is suing Sony, the film’s studio, for copyright infringement after the critically acclaimed film used a quote without permission.
The quote, spoken by Gil Pender, played by Owen Wilson, is from a passage in Faulkner’s “Requiem for a Nun,” which reads: “The past is never dead. It’s not even past.”
In the film, Wilson’s character says, “The past is not dead! Actually, it’s not even past. You know who said that? Faulkner. And he was right. And I met him, too. I ran into him at a dinner party.”
But according to the six-page complaint filed by Faulkner Literary Rights LLC:”The use of the infringing quote and of William Faulkner’s name in the infringing film is likely to cause confusion, to cause mistake, and/or to deceive the infringing film’s viewers as to a perceived affiliation, connection or association between William Faulkner and his works, on the one hand, and Sony, on the other hand.”
Faulkner Literary Rights LLC. is suing Sony Classics for “damages, disgorgement of profits, costs and attorney fees.”
“Midnight In Paris” was Woody Allen’s highest-grossing film ever, bringing in over $151 million worldwide, though he was not personally named as a defendant.
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