Netflix has filed suit against musical theatre writers Abigail Barlow and Emily Bear, creators of viral sensation The Unofficial Bridgerton Musical. The move comes just days after Barlow and Bear performed songs from the project in a starry concert at The Kennedy Center, where they were joined by Broadway favorites Kelli O'Hara, Ephraim Sykes, Denée Benton, and more, as well as the The National Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Steven Reineke.
Based on the Netflix series, the musical was originally designed as a social media stunt, ultimately earning more than 36 million likes on TikTok. The duo later released an album of 15 songs written for the project, which won the 2022 Grammy Award for Best Musical Theatre Album.
According to Netflix's complaint, the streamer is alleging that Barlow and Bear "have taken valuable intellectual property from the Netflix original series Bridgerton to build an international brand for themselves." The filing goes on to state that the team's "conduct began on social media, but stretches 'fan fiction' well past its breaking point."
The streamer is seeking an unspecified amount of damages along with attorneys' fees.