Family of Randy Rhoads Loses Legal Battle Over Coffee Table Book
A Randy Rhoads legal battle that lasted over two years has finally come to an end. The legendary's guitarist's family lost a court case over a Randy Rhoads coffee table book which emanated from a scrapped documentary.
Back in December 2012, Rhoads' estate and family filed suit against the coffee table book's authors, Peter Margolis, Andrew Klein and Steven Rosen, along with Velocity Publishing Group, Inc. The argument was that materials used for a Randy Rhoads documentary could not legally be published through a book.
"On April 1, 2007, Margolis entered into an agreement with the Rhoads family to produce a single documentary film on the life of Randy Rhoads," a press release from the Rhoads family reads. "Margolis assured the family that the film would be completed within three years. From that point on, however, Margolis himself did not own any of the ideas and materials obtained or created in the production of the documentary, or any of the photos, videos or sound recordings collected for use in it, having assigned all of that to Dakota Films, the company financing and producing the documentary. Over the next several years, Margolis, Klein and others, working for Dakota Films, went forward with the project. Although Margolis reportedly claimed, as of early 2012, that the documentary was completed — 'in the can' — it has never been released. Individuals who saw portions of it during production have reported that it was 'edited poorly and unprofessionally,' and that the quality of the film was 'abysmal.' The Rhoads family was frustrated by what they considered the mediocre quality of Margolis' film, and by the fact that the 'official documentary' they had so long hoped for had never come to fruition. This has been especially painful for Randy's mother, Delores Rhoads, who is now in her nineties, and has spent the last three decades carefully preserving and advancing the legacy of her son."
The statement continues, "The family contends that Margolis and Klein have stolen the materials; they have no rights or ownership of, from the failed documentary. They used them in the book, in order to try to exploit Randy and the family for their own profit, while trying to establish themselves as 'authorities' on Randy Rhoads. They have falsely implied that they have the Rhoads family's support and cooperation for the unauthorized book. The family emphasizes that in no way did they authorize or participate in publication of the book, nor have they had anything more to do with either Margolis or Klein since the production of the unreleased documentary ended. Moreover, according to the family's complaint, the book contained more than fifty instances in which Klein and Margolis had used, without permission, photos, excerpts from interviews and other personal information that had been provided to them by the Rhoads family solely and exclusively for use in the authorized documentary film and for no other purpose."
According to Law360, a California appeals court ruled that the book's authors had a First Amendment right to publish. Law360 reports, "The three-judge panel's ruling reversed a lower court's denial of a motion to dismiss claims of fraud, invasion of privacy, misappropriation of names, voices and likenesses and unfair competition leveled against television producer Peter Margolis and co-author Andrew Klein."
A release date for the Randy Rhoads coffee table book has not yet been set.