There's a bill in California that, if it becomes law, would offer greater protection of the images of celebrities who are deceased. The state adopted such a law in 1985, but this proposed legislation would retroactively apply to stars who died before then:
The bill would apply such rights to celebrities who died before 1985 and would retroactively allow them to be passed to nonrelatives. Opponents of the legislation say that it could retroactively nullify publicity rights that have been in the public domain or held by relatives of hundreds of dead actors and artists, and trigger a flood of lawsuits.
If it becomes law, "this is going to cause pandemonium in the courts," said Surjit Soni, a Pasadena attorney representing a company founded by the late Milton H. Greene, a Monroe photographer.
Interestingly, the bill is sponsored by Sen. Sheila James Kuehl, who played "the irrepressible Zelda Gilroy" in The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis from 1959-1963.
Useless Fact #1: Dobie Gillis provided the first on-screen role for Warren Beatty.
Useless Fact #2: The characters in the Scooby-Doo cartoons are based on the characters from Dobie Gillis.