Entertainment & Sports Law

Actors Want Share of 'Happy Days,' 'Partridge Family' & 'A Christmas Story' Merchandise Sales

Zack Ward, the actor who played the red-headed bully Scut Farkus from the 1983 movie A Christmas Story is suing Warner Bros Entertainment Inc., claiming the company used his image to produce toy action figures without his permission.

Ward, who filed suit in federal court in California this week, maintains that he wasn’t consulted about licensing his likeness for consumer merchandise, Reuters reports.

Ward isn’t the only actor pursuing a share of merchandising profits. Reuters maintains there are more of these cases, in part, because actors, thanks to the Internet, are more aware of how their likenesses are being used and merchandising contracts for older productions weren’t as sophisticated. And, studios are ramping up merchandising in general, even on older shows.

In addition to Ward, Reuters notes that four members of the 1970s show Happy Days have sued CBS Studios Inc. and Paramount Pictures for royalties. Also, David Cassidy, of the 1970s show The Partridge Family maintains he is owed a share of profits from show-related merchandise.

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