Netflix has settled its copyright lawsuit brought against Unofficial Bridgerton Musical writers Abigail Barlow and Emily Bear, according to a report in Variety. Details of the settlement remain unclear, but the suit was dismissed at Netflix's request September 23.
The legal action centered around Barlow and Bear's The Unofficial Bridgerton Musical, based on the Netflix series and originally designed as a social media stunt. The viral success on TikTok ultimately earned more than 36 million likes and spawned a 15-track album that won the 2022 Grammy Award for Best Musical Theatre Album and two concert presentations—at London's Royal Albert Hall in September and Washington, D.C.'s Kennedy Center in July.
The streamer had reportedly sanctioned the album but not the live, for-profit concerts. Netflix also alleged that it had attempted to officially license the story and characters to Barlow and Bear but were rejected prior to the concerts.
"There is so much joy in seeing audiences fall in love with Bridgerton and watching the creative ways they express their fandom," said series executive producer Shonda Rhimes in an earlier statement. "What started as a fun celebration by Barlow & Bear on social media has turned into the blatant taking of intellectual property solely for Barlow & Bear’s financial benefit. This property was created by Julia Quinn and brought to life on screen through the hard work of countless individuals. Just as Barlow & Bear would not allow others to appropriate their IP for profit, Netflix cannot stand by and allow Barlow & Bear to do the same with Bridgerton."