Wednesday, March 26
Just thought I'd update you on my November 8, 2006 post regarding the lawsuit against Rachael Ray's show Food Network show Inside Dish with Rachael Ray (and her syndicated talkshow Rachael Ray) in which two men alleged the show was a ripoff of the one they pitched to Food Network back in 2001, tentatively titled Showbiz Chefs.
Food Network's then-President Judy Girard returned the script, saying they had "no interest in celebrities at all."
I don't really remember any major celebrity moments in Food Network's history, but perhaps they all failed before they even aired.
From what I gather, the lawsuit eventually went on to include Rachael's talkshow, which the persons filing the lawsuit allege infringed upon their original idea of a 30-minute show in which celebrities would cook their favorite meals in their own kitchens.
Ummm... not really the same at all.
Luckily, the judge agreed:
"The generic talk-show format is not protectable, U.S. District Judge Audrey B. Collins said, and any similarities between Showbiz Chefs and the CBS-produced Rachael Ray are 'scenes a faire' that naturally flow from the interview and talk-show format ... Cooking segments may individualize the talk-show structure somewhat, but they still represent the outgrowth of the generic talk show, especially when the host can, in fact, cook."
This is a double-win for Rachael. First, her shows (and the people producing them) aren't going to be held responsible for any damages. Second, a judge actually said she can "in fact, cook"! To all the naysayers, be a naysayer no more. Be a...ummm... yeasayer.