NEW YORK – An independent filmmaker filed a federal lawsuit against Beyonce on Wednesday alleging that ideas from his 2014 short film were used to create the trailer that accompanied her new visual album “Lemonade.”
Matthew Fulks alleges in his lawsuit that his 2014 short film, “Palinoia,” had been seen by members of the team working on the “Lemonade” video and that Beyonce’s video was created months later and was “visually similar.”
Fulks, who lives in Louisville, Kentucky, alleges that the pop singer, her management company, Parkwood Entertainment, Sony Music Entertainment and Columbia Recording Corporation, infringed on his copyright.
“I’m not going to comment further at this time, but the cat is out of the bag and has made it’s way to the interwebz,” Fulks said on his Facebook page.
The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court in Manhattan, points to nine instances – about 39 seconds of the 65-second trailer – that Fulks says are visually similar. It seeks unspecified monetary damages.
The “Lemonade” trailer is “substantially similar” to Fulks’ film, including a similar mood, setting, pace and fonts, he says in the lawsuit.
The video, posted on YouTube on April 17, had received nearly 11 million views by Wednesday afternoon.
Representatives for Beyonce and the corporations did not immediately respond to requests for comment Thursday.