'Imagine' This: Yoko Asserts Copyright Claim Against Filmmakers over Use of Lennon Song

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'Imagine' This: Yoko Asserts Copyright Claim Against Filmmakers over Use of Lennon Song

Fri Apr 25, 2008 @ 02:58PM PST

Posted by Matthew Heller

Onoyoko Yoko Ono has leaped into legal action within days of a New York screening of an anti-evolution documentary that allegedly used John Lennon's "Imagine" without her consent.

Bloggers had accused Ono of "selling out" by licensing the song to the makers of "Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed," which challenges Darwinian evolution and supports the teaching of the "intelligent design" theory. But in a copyright infringement suit, Ono says Premise Media Corp. and Rampant Films "have no license or any other form of permission" to use "Imagine."

The film was screened April 18 in Manhattan and, according to the complaint, the closing credits display ownership, credit and permissions information for all the songs on the soundtrack -- except "Imagine." "[C]lose inspection reveals that the 'permission granted' line was omitted in the case of the Song," Ono alleges.

The suit seeks injunctive relief and at least $75,000 in damages for what, if the allegations are true, seems a very unintelligent choice of music.

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