Netflix settles lawsuit over ‘Umbrella Academy’ villain with mermaid head – The Hollywood Reporter

Netflix and Dark Horse Comics have settled a copyright lawsuit from cartoonist Kevin Atkinson alleging the idea for an aquarium-head villain in Oh Academy was lifted from him, according to Atkinson’s attorney.

Details of the deal, filed on Wednesday, were not made public because the records were sealed. The settlement was reached less than a month after the judge overseeing the case allowed Netflix to dismiss the lawsuit a second time. Atkinson had one last chance to correct his claims but chose to settle.

Atkinson sued last year claiming that the source material, published in 2008, from Netflix Oh Academy was adapted, copying his design for a character that first appeared in 1996 in his Rogue Satellite Comics. Both characters are villains known for having talking fish in bell jars with the shape of a normal human head.

In order to establish a claim of copyright infringement, there must be evidence of sueable copying, regarding access to the copyrighted work prior to the creation of the infringing work, and proof of similarity. If access cannot be proved, a party may prove copying by showing a “remarkable similarity” between the works in dispute.

US District Judge Robert Schroeder twice refused to allow the case to continue. In May, he sided with Oh Academy Comics author Gerald Way, who is named in the complaint, that he does not have access to and has not viewed Atkinson’s work.

In terms of similarities, the judge found that neither the characters nor the plot were up to standard.

“Overall concept[s] and felt ‘between the two plots is incomparable,’ the order read. ‘Rogue Satellite Comics is done in a black and white style, with a ‘strong’ vibe; on the contrary, ‘Oh Academy‘sharp, crisp and colorful. “

Netflix distributes the series and is not credited as a producer.

Dark Horse Comics and Netflix did not respond to requests for comment.

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