Tuesday 10 December 2019

Roddy Doyle gives up rights to play in legal battle over 'Playboy' royalties

Tim Healy

NOVELIST Roddy Doyle is to transfer all of his rights to a play he co-authored as part of the settlement of a High Court action over alleged copyright infringement.

He has agreed to assign those rights to dramatist Bisi Adigun, who had sued Mr Doyle, the Abbey Theatre and producer Jimmy Fay arising out of the staging of a modern version of the 'Playboy of the Western World', co-written by Mr Adigun and Mr Doyle.

In this version, the play's main character, playboy Christy Mahon, is a Nigerian asylum seeker.

Mr Adigun, of Moorefield Cottages, Roebuck Road, Clonskeagh, Dublin, had claimed 120 changes had been made to the co-written version which was successfully produced in the Dublin Theatre Festival in 2007.

Mr Adigun and his theatre company, Arambe Productions, claimed the Abbey, in conjunction with Mr Doyle, remounted "a distorted version" in 2008/9, produced by Mr Fay.

The case was due to be heard yesterday when Mr Justice Kevin Feeney was told by Michael Cush SC, for Arambe Productions, that it had been settled.

It stated the defendants had acknowledged that there were royalty payments due to Arambe from both the first and second production runs of the play.

They also acknowledged that there "were alterations to the script for the second production run of the play which were not authorised by Mr Adigun".

In recognition of this, the Abbey had agreed to make certain payments to Arambe and Mr Adigun.

It further stated Mr Doyle had "decided to transfer and assign all of his rights of whatever nature" in the co-authored version of the play to Mr Adigun.

Certain other terms were also agreed between the parties and on that basis all outstanding litigation had been resolved, the statement added.

Irish Independent

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