Dastar Corp. v. Twentieth Century Fox Film Corp.
United States Supreme Court
539 U.S. 23 (2003)
In 1948, Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation (Fox) (plaintiff) was assigned the copyright for Crusade in Europe, a television series based on a book of the same name. Fox neglected to renew the copyright on the television series before the series expired in 1977, and the series subsequently entered the public domain. However, the copyright for the Crusade in Europe book was renewed. In 1988, Fox reacquired the television rights to the book, which included the right to license the original Crusade in Europe television series. In 1995, Dastar Corporation (Dastar) (defendant) purchased copies of the original version of the Crusade in Europe television series, repackaged Dastar’s own version, and sold copies of the video to retailers under a new title. Dastar listed itself as the producer and distributer of the videos and made no acknowledgments or references to the original television series or book. In 1998, Fox brought a suit against Dastar, claiming that the sale of Dastar’s videos without attribution to the original series amounted to reverse passing off, which was a violation of § 43(a) of the Lanham Act. The district court granted summary judgment in favor of Fox on the § 43(a) claim, and the court of appeals affirmed the decision. Dastar petitioned the United States Supreme Court for certiorari, which was granted.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Scalia, J.)
What to do next…
Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.
You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 97,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Vanderbilt, Berkeley, and the University of Illinois—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students. Read our student testimonials.
Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.
Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students. Read more about Quimbee.
Here's why 174,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:
- Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 14,000 briefs, keyed to 188 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
- The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
- Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
- Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.