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Thursday, 4 October 2007

Family Guy accused of Antisemitic song
Infringement of Copyright claimed

If the video doesn't load click here:
Family Guy - I need a Jew

Show accused of anti-Jewish spoof of 'When You Wish Upon a Star'

NEW YORK - The 67-year-old dreamy classic "When You Wish Upon A Star" was twisted into an anti-Jewish ballad and was widely distributed as part of a comedy television program, the song's owner said Wednesday in a lawsuit seeking to stop its distribution.

In a lawsuit in U.S. District Court in Manhattan, music publishing house Bourne Co. accused Twentieth Century Fox Film Corp., Fox Broadcasting Co., the Cartoon Network and others of copyright infringement and sought unspecified damages.

The lawsuit said the defendants in 2000 included the spoof song, "I Need a Jew," in an episode of the Fox television show "The Family Guy" that was titled "When You Wish Upon a Weinstein."

The episode relied on the premise that the main character could not manage his family's finances and needed to hire a Jewish person to take care of his money, the lawsuit said.

During the episode, the main character sings "I Need a Jew," which the lawsuit called a thinly veiled copy of the music from "When You Wish Upon a Star" accompanied by new anti-Semitic lyrics.

Fox hadn't seen the complaint as of Wednesday afternoon and had no comment, spokesman Chris Alexander said.

According to the lawsuit, Fox initially withheld the episode from distribution because of its content but eventually earned large sums of money by distributing more than one million copies of it to the public in various home video formats.

It said the Cartoon Network first aired the episode on Nov. 10, 2003. A message for comment left with the network was not immediately returned Wednesday.

"When You Wish Upon a Star," written by Ned Washington and Leigh Harline, debuted in 1940 as part of the Walt Disney motion picture "Pinocchio." It won the Academy Award that year for Best Original Song and has been recorded by more than 100 artists and orchestras.

"With its theme of wholesome hopefulness, the song has gained worldwide status as a classic," the lawsuit said. "By associating Bourne's song with such offensive lyrics and other content in the episode, defendants are harming the value of the song."

Bourne is the sole U.S. copyright owner of "When You Wish Upon a Star."

There's a very good discussion of this song and the episode at Wikipedia:
When You Wish Upon a Weinstein


SnoopyTheGoon said...

Good idea, I need to hire a Jew too then. Er... wait a sec here...

Anonymous said...

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Hope this helps others.