Volume 92, Issue 85

Wednesday, March 10, 1999


London ranks low on safety scale

Conflict motion creates conflict

Harichy arrest not for medical reasons

U of T cashes in Varsity Blues rights

Debating both pros

New rez struts its stuff in video

Prof excellence rewarded

March the month for vehicle violations


Caught on campus

Caught on campus too

U of T cashes in Varsity Blues rights

By Becky Somerville
Gazette Staff

A settlement made between Paramount Pictures and the University of Toronto over the movie Varsity Blues has done more than merely disassociate the university with the film's negative stereotypes.

U of T, which holds the registered trademark of "Varsity Blues" for their intercollegiate athletic department, sued Paramount last month alleging the movie conveyed a poor depiction of collegiate sports with which the university did not want to be associated.

Bruce Kidd, dean of the faculty of physical education and health at U of T, said Paramount offered the university a "significant donation" which it will use to provide eight scholarships to athletes in need of financial assistance.

Paramount also agreed to put a disclaimer on the video and the book, indicating the football team portrayed in the movie is not based on the U of T Varsity Blues athletics program, Kidd said.

"We're very pleased with the settlement. It's quite satisfying," he said. Kidd would not disclose the amount of the settlement.

He added Varsity Blues demonstrated an abusive approach to sports in an educational setting which he did not want linked to U of T. "We hope the disclaimer will make it clear the university has no formal association with the film."

Head coach of the Varsity Blues football team Bob Laycoe said he was pleased with the compensation from Paramount. "I think any kind of settlement that will benefit student athletes to pursue both academic and athletic excellence is a bonus for the university."

Laycoe added he found it strange that prior to the release of the film Paramount was not aware of the name Varsity Blues and its connection to U of T.

Christopher Earp, a wide receiver for the Varsity Blues, said while he thought the movie generated a stereotypical view of varsity sports, the rest of the football team had mixed views about its implications for U of T.

"I think most people can differentiate a team from Texas from a team from Toronto," Earp said.

Blaise Noto, executive vice-president of publicity at Paramount, said while he could not discuss details of the settlement, he was happy the two parties were able to reach an agreement quickly.

"We're very pleased that the situation has worked out to everyone's mutual satisfaction," Noto said.

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Copyright The Gazette 1999