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Saturday, June 15, 2024 | Back issues
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Seth MacFarlane Vindicated on Idea for ‘Ted’

LOS ANGELES (CN) - A federal complaint accusing "Family Guy" creator Seth MacFarlane of stealing the idea for the foul-mouthed teddy bear used in the comedy "Ted" has been dismissed with prejudice.

Bengal Mangle Productions in July 2014 accused MacFarlane and others of copyright infringement. Bengal Mangle said the idea for the "Ted" bear came from its Web series "Charlie the Abusive Teddy Bear," which began in 2009.

The Charlie bear is depicted as a washed-up former child actor with human friends, who has a penchant for swearing, hookers, booze, drugs and angry outbursts.

Bengal said MacFarlane was active on the website FunnyorDie during the time the "Charlie the Abusive Teddy Bear" episodes were aired and the Ted character has many similarities. Those similarities included being a former child star, using vulgar language, loving hookers and being a boozehound. And a Teddy bear.

While the similarities led to the copyright complaint, Bengal says that during discovery it confirmed that MacFarlane independently created the idea for the ill-behaved bear that appeared with Mark Wahlberg in the 2012 R-rated comedy.

In light of the new information confirming that no copyright infringement occurred, Bengal, MacFarlane and others on Monday agreed to dismiss the complaint with prejudice.

Also named as defendants were production company Fuzzy Door Productions, distributor Media Rights Capital II, MRC II Distribution, and Thunder Buddies, and Universal Pictures, Universal Studios Home Entertainment and Universal City Studios.

"Ted" became a surprise hit and grossed more than $500 million worldwide in 2012. A "Ted" sequel is in the works that will reunite MacFarlane, who voiced "Ted," with Wahlberg, who plays his human friend.

The Teddy bear is named for President Theodore Roosevelt.

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