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NBC Sues Over Dean Martin DVD Rights

13 Sep, 2007 By: Erik Gruenwedel

Greg Garrison Presents The Best of the Dean Martin Variety Show

He's been dead nearly 12 years. But like a lot of entertainment icons, Dean Martin's stock is apparently on the rise.

NBC Universal last month filed a copyright infringement lawsuit against a direct marketing company — among others — that has been selling The Best of the Dean Martin Variety Show on VHS and DVD on the Internet and by mail since 2003.

“The Dean Martin Show,” which featured the popular actor, crooner and nightclub act, aired weekly on NBC from 1965 to 1976.

The suit, filed Aug. 23 in Los Angeles District Court, alleges that Guthy-Renker Corp. and Greg Garrison Productions (GGP), which produced the DVDs, used material portions of at least 86 episodes of the show that appear on the DVDs without permission.

Garrison, who died in 2005, was the producer of Martin's TV show.

The suit, which seeks a jury trial and unspecified damages, claims the defendants “have sold many thousands of copies” and “grossed tens of millions of dollars.”

Representatives from Guthy-Renker and GGP were not immediately available for comment.

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