Just weeks after Kim Novak took out a full-page ad in Variety saying “I’d like to report a rape” because of a Vertigo sample in The Artist, Courtney Love has become the latest public figure to accuse a film soundtrack of violating her. In this case, The Muppets, which Love says used a Nirvana song without her permission. For her part, Whoopi Goldberg says she isn’t sure if it was “rape” rape.
Courtney Love believes Kermit the Frog and his gang of Muppet friends “raped” the memory of her ex-husband Kurt Cobain — by bastardizing Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit” in their 2011 movie … without her permission.
I don’t know if those quotes mean Courtney Love actually used the word “rape,” but I wouldn’t put it past TMZ to invoke the image of a muppet gangbang just because. (Though it is Courtney Love we’re talking, it’s not out of the question).
Courtney says she has the absolute power to approve or nix the use of Kurt’s music for commercial purposes, and she never gave the OK for the 2 companies to use the song for the 2011 Muppets movie.
But there’s another side to this … We’re told Courtney sold off half of her rights to Kurt’s music to a company called Primary Wave Music. And there’s more … Courtney also gave Primary Wave the exclusive right to distribute Nirvana’s entire catalog.
As far as “Smells Like Teen Spirit” goes … not only did Primary Wave approve the use in the Muppet’s movie, they got permission from the two surviving Nirvana members — Dave Grohl and Krist Novoselic. And Dave is even in the movie. [TMZ]
I’m not a lawyer, but it seems to me the guys who were actually in the band with the song writer would have more right to his music than the person who killed him. That seems like a bad precedent.
Here’s the song from the movie. It is a delight.
It’s hard to deny that Hollywood soundtracks seem to have a real rape epidemic on their hands. If you ask me, the real problem is the Archbishops, who hear these allegations and instead of taking action, just keep shuffling songs from playlist to playlist.