George Carlin’s Estate Files Lawsuit Over Fake Comedy Special

Lawsuit FILED - It's Getting Messy Now!


In light of the increasing prominence of artificial intelligence (AI), there are growing apprehensions about its potential overreach. A legal action has been initiated by the estate of the late comedian George Carlin regarding a comedy special purportedly generated by AI. However, the concerns extend beyond the technology itself, as the estate seeks to establish accountability for the creators involved.

The lawsuit was lodged in the Central District of California on Thursday, January 25, with the aim of holding Chad Kultgen and Will Sasso responsible for copyright infringement and breaching the right of publicity. The pair, proprietors of the “Dudesy” podcast, shared a one-hour special titled “George Carlin: I’m Glad I’m Dead” on YouTube.

The daughter of Carlin voiced her criticism of the video, asserting that it is a badly executed imitation crafted by unscrupulous individuals with the intention of exploiting the fanbase of the late comedian. The legal action highlights that the duo attempted to secure the necessary authorization to utilize Carlin’s likeness for the AI-generated content, but they lacked a license to use any of his copyrighted materials.

Based on online comments, it appears that a significant number of individuals are not supportive of the hastily assembled creation. Some have even speculated that the content might not be entirely the result of AI generation.

Kyle Orland, a writer at Ars Technica, observes that the AI models lack the sophistication needed to produce an entire hour-long show as asserted by the duo. Orland goes to the extent of characterizing the podcast utilizing AI as a form of “kayfabe,” representing events as genuine and authentic.

Deepening the enigma is a comment from Sasso’s representative, Danielle Del, asserting that Dudesy is not AI, contrary to the duo’s assertion. Del further clarified that the Carlin special was not generated by AI but was entirely composed by Chad Kultgen.

She didn’t go into detail about if the voice acting as Carlin is artificial intelligence (AI). The comedian’s estate is proceeding with the lawsuit in spite of this allegation. The public was not allowed to view the footage after the lawsuit was filed.