Los Angeles, CA – Tyler Perry, whose numerous job titles seemingly take up most of the movie trailer (reciting: written by Tyler Perry, directed by Tyler Perry, starring Tyler Perry, produced by Tyler Perry, edited by Tyler Perry, etc.), was sued for copyright infringement by the estate of the late gospel singer Bertha V. James. Plaintiffs allege that James wrote the lyrics for the song “When I Think of the Goodness of Jesus” in 1950, a traditional gospel song, “which was published and copy written (sic.) in 1974 by Elma & Carl’s Publisher, Inc.”
Plaintiffs allege that Tyler Perry “incorporated an entire verse of Plaintiff’s work, willfully without a license within their audiovisual work in a major motion picture feature film entitled ‘Madea Goes to Jail,’ Lionsgate Studios 2008.” Plaintiffs may elect between the profits generated by the defendants or statutory damages under 17 U.S.C. § 504. Plaintiffs also requests that the damages be enhanced because the Defendant’s alleged infringement is willful and intentional. Plaintiffs also seek attorneys’ fees and other costs pursuant to 17 U.S.C. § 505. The case is Estate of Bertha V. The Tyler Perry Company, Inc., et al., CV09-08712 JFW (C.D. Cal. 2009).