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Lawsuit Says Purple Dinosaur Owes For ‘I Love You’ Song

April 26, 1994 GMT

EVERETT, Wash. (AP) _ What? Barney the dinosaur without the ″I Love You″ song?

Everett music publisher Jean Warren has sued Barney’s owner, alleging copyright infringement. She says she bought the rights to the song in 1983 and wants a cut of the profits.

The U.S. District Court lawsuit was filed by Warren Publishing House Inc. against the Lyons Group of Dallas, Barney’s owner, and companies that have marketed musical Barney products, including Time-Life Inc. and J.C. Penney Co.

The Lyons Group said it purchased rights to the lyrics in 1992 from the Indiana woman who wrote them, Lee Bernstein. Warren Publishing said it already owned the rights.

Russell Mack, a Lyons Group spokesman, denied the lawsuit has influenced Barney’s music but said he didn’t know if the purple one will sing ″I Love You″ in next season’s Public Broadcasting System shows, to begin taping next month.

Video Week magazine said the ″Barney and Friends″ show has generated hundreds of millions of dollars in related product sales and $50 million in licensing revenues for the Lyons Group. Warren Publishing seeks an unspecified share of profits attributable to the song.

″This shouldn’t be perceived as an anti-Barney suit,″ attorney Jim Donohue, representing Warren Publishing, said Tuesday. ″Warren Publishing is in fact quite a believer in Barney and what the Barney program is trying to do.″

A trial on the lawsuit, filed in May 1993, is scheduled for Sept. 18 in Seattle.