On some cases the parody becomes a recurring character, in which case it pays to cover your butt legally. Look at The Simpson's Rainier Wolfcastle.
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Why is it that whenever a celebrity appears in a cartoon, but isn't voiced by said celebrity, they have to have a different name?
Surely a mere name change isn't going to prevent the parodied celebrity from suing them for making fun of him or her?
And why do they have to change the celebrity's name even when they aren't making fun of them?
Well yeah, I'm pretty sure the reason they do it is so that they don't have to pay to use the celebrity's likeness, and pretend it's just a coincidental resemblance.
On the other hand, the Flintstones would get the actual celebrity to voice a character identical to them, but with some horrible, forced "rock" pun, ie. "Cary Granite", etc.
Fairly Oddparents is notorious for it, with Britney Britney for example. There have been countless celebrity cariactures on that show, but always with another name. The 1990's WB cartoons never pulled punches when it came to naming trademarked things or people, and continued to do so well into the 2000's. Though I suspect Spielberg's name being on the shows and the fact that it was WB gave them some leeway.
Well, Britney Spears is very likely too stupid to know a parody of her when she sees one.
Last edited by Wussycat; 01-10-2007 at 08:14 PM.
Maybe it's a legal issue. This gets me to thinking about the hilarious FOP episode "Movie Magic", which featured such big names as Sylvester Calzone and Arnold Schwartzengerman. I even found myself laughing at the names.
I feel that a big problem with today's society is that we don't listen to our fellow man -- especially when I'm talking.
"Never be afraid to borrow from those wiser than yourself." - Mr. Jimmy (voice of David Arquette) on "Pelswick"
"What do I care what some yahoo like Lonestarr posts on the internet?" - President Skroob (voice of Mel Brooks) on "Spaceballs: the Series"
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Nobody likes having to rise to a challenge, but competing against other people and getting in thier face to say 'ha-ha I'm better than you' is a part of life sometimes!
In "Treehouse of Horror XII" they actually included this credit at the end of the show: "Dennis Miller voice impersonated by Dan Castellaneta." I guess they were afraid that Captain Hairdo aka Dennis Miller was going to sue. Guess what folks? That's the news and I am outta here!
Oh, no, no. Iím not in the group yet. No, Iím afraid I just blue myself.
"Toonces, the Driving Cat / the cat who could drive a car, He drives around, all over the town / Toonces, the Driving Cat!"
I guess Toonces can drive. Just not very well.
People and their beloved pets, they come on, they do little stunts, they do little tricks... This is only an exhibition, this is not a competition. Please, as always, ladies and gentlemen... no wagering.
Parodies of famous people goes back many decades in animation----sure some silent cartoon must've made fun of Charlie Chaplin at some point.
Parody in the United States is a protected form of freedom of speech (per the First Amendment to the US Constitution)... as determined in various lawsuits (including IIRC one involving raunchy 80's rap group 2 Live Crew). The legal line might come when a parody becomes something that makes a bunch of money for someone or is seen as supposed out-and-out copyright infringement (a recent lawsuit was made over a "sequel" book to "Gone WIth the Wind" written by someone other than GWTW's heirs).
Personally, I like seeing parodies of celebrities---- they can often be a riot (or their names turned into puns, a la the Flintstones), and sometimes more creative than just merely depicting a real famous person ... :-) One comic book example: 70s Superman comics presented everyone's favorite late-night host, "Johnny Nevada", host of "The Midnight Show"... presumably making him Earth-1's version of Johnny Carson (leading to another possible excuse for such name-changes of celebs: that "Pinky and the Brain" or "The Simpsons"'s worlds aren't exactly the same as our own, and such name-altered celebs are just their world's counterparts of our own celebs...).
Oh me so bunny, oh me so bunny, oh me so bunny, me hop a long time....
I still can't believe they got away with that.
well, the Venture brothers got away with having David Bowie without him being actually voiced by Bowie.
Also: south park, there is this myth that even when they actually get the celebrity, they give 'em stupid roles instead of letting them voice themselves.
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