The Weeknd’s Black Panther Copyright Infringement Battle Is Officially Over

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The Weeknd performing in 2012. Photo Credit: David Hwang

Yeasayer’s Black Panther copyright-infringement lawsuit against The Weeknd has officially drawn to a close, with The Weeknd assuming no liability in the matter.

Digital Music News was first to report on the high-profile complaint back in February, when Yeasayer submitted it to a New York federal court. In essence, the experimental rock band alleged that The Weeknd had borrowed from its “Sunrise” track when creating “Pray for Me” for 2018’s Black Panther.

The novel coronavirus crisis prompted the courtroom confrontation’s delay in March, and last month, a confidentiality order was issued in the case – likely due to our in-depth coverage.

At this time, it’s unclear what exactly prompted the dismissal. The corresponding document, signed off on by both sides’ legal teams, simply indicates that the plaintiffs have “confirmed to their satisfaction that no copyright infringement occurred [against Yeasayer] as The Weeknd created the soundtrack for Black Panther,” before jointly calling for “the dismissal of this action in its entirety.”

Neither Yeasayer nor The Weeknd has publicly commented on the dismissal.

Just moments ago, The Weeknd took to social media to voice his support for Black Out Tuesday, a protest initiative designed to raise awareness of violence against African Americans. Though the music industry conceived and planned the event, a number of non-music professionals and individuals are also participating.

The 30-year-old’s second message on the matter reads: “To my fellow respected industry partners and execs- no one profits off of black music more than the labels and streaming services. I gave yesterday and I urge you to go big and public with yours this week. It would mean the world to me and the community if you can join us on this.”

And his prior post detailed these donations and called on fans to make their own contributions. Via screenshots, the Toronto native revealed that he’s given $200,000 to the Black Lives Matter Global Network, $200,000 to the Know Your Rights Camp, and $100,000 to National Bail Out.

Many have supported non-profit organizations since protests broke out over the death of George Floyd last week, but The Weeknd’s offerings look to be the largest of those disclosed by artists and entertainment industry professionals on social media.