Suit on ‘Sabrina’ Goat-Headed Statue Is Settled
Posted November 22, 2018 3:53 p.m. EST
The Satanic Temple said on Wednesday that it had settled its lawsuit accusing Warner Bros. and Netflix of copying the temple’s goat-headed statue in their new “Sabrina” series.
The lawsuit was “amicably settled,” Lucien Greaves, a co-founder of the temple, wrote in a blog post on the Patheos religion-themed website.
The temple will be acknowledged in the credits for episodes of “The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina” that have already been filmed, Greaves wrote. The rest of the settlement, including details on what will happen in future episodes of the show, is confidential, according to Bruce Lederman, the temple’s lawyer.
The Satanic Temple’s lawsuit, filed Nov. 9 in U.S. District Court in Manhattan, asked for at least $50 million for the alleged copyright infringement and injury to the temple’s reputation. Lederman would not comment on whether there was any financial settlement.
The temple, an activist group based in Salem, Massachusetts, defines its mission, in part, to “reject tyrannical authority” and to “encourage benevolence and empathy among all people.” The statue, “Baphomet With Children,” was designed about five years ago. It was based on an 1856 drawing of the muscled goat-headed deity made by Éliphas Lévi, an occultist. The statue features two children staring up at Baphomet as if worshipping him.
It was meant as a protest to religious statues appearing on public property. In 2015, the temple tried to get it installed at the Oklahoma Capitol in response to a Ten Commandments monument. (The state Supreme Court eventually ordered the Ten Commandments removed.) This year the temple brought it to the Arkansas Capitol to protest a Ten Commandments display there.
A similar statue to “Baphomet With Children” appears in “Sabrina” representing the Dark Lord, who fights the teenage half-human, half-witch Sabrina. The Satanic Temple said the statue not only infringed on its copyright, but damaged its reputation by portraying the statue as evil.
In a statement, Warner Bros., which produces the show, acknowledged the settlement without elaborating. Netflix did not respond to a request for comment.
Greaves, in his blog post, thanked people who had supported the lawsuit, but he also complained about the “large number of people who flooded us with hate mail and armchair legal analysis.” One email implored him not to ruin a show that “just tries to bring joy into the world,” he wrote.
“So ends one of the most overpublicized of copyright claims,” Greaves added. “Press can now stop pretending this was unique and momentous, or even interesting.”