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Injunction hits Sony in Stooge subterfuge

A Los Angeles Superior Court judge has given a big nyuk, nyuk, nyuk to Sony Signatures with a preliminary injunction to stop Sony from acting as an agent for Comedy III Prods., the owner of the merchandising rights to the Three Stooges.

The injunction immediately restrains Sony Signatures from repping Comedy III in all transactions, payments and negotiations for anything to do with Three Stooges product.

Comedy III Prods., which is the banner created by some of the original Stooges in 1959, sued Sony Signatures a few weeks ago for breach of contract, negligence, misappropriation of funds and theft, among other forms of misconduct.

Sony and the Stooges had a deal to license and merchandise Stooge clothes, dolls and paraphernalia, which the Stooge contingent maintains was breached.

A day after the original complaint, Sony filed a cross-complaint, also in L.A. Superior Court in Burbank, to uphold the contract, which has been in effect since March 30, 1995.

Merchandising reverts

The injunction allows Comedy III to take over its own merchandising and licensing, thus terminating the agreement it had originally signed with Sony Signatures to license and merchandise Stooge paraphernalia.

“We’re very pleased with the results of the court hearing last Friday,” said Bela Lugosi, attorney for Comedy III, and son of the namesake actor. “Comedy III looks forward to handling all of its own merchandising and licensing.”

Sony had no comment on the injunction.

The original suit was filed after Comedy III sent Sony a letter terminating the pact between them.

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