Toronto Venue Targeted Over Mouse Musical

A small venue in Toronto that scored some heat from Deadmau5 for advertising a mouse-themed musical is off the hook after the DJ decided to call off his attorneys.

Photo: Scott Legato /
Festival D'été de Québec, Quebec City, QC, Canada

The city’s Al Green Theatre is set to stage “Deadmouse: The Musical,” which is described as a production “about a mouse who wants to be a house DJ but is discriminated against for being a mouse. … Think Ratatouille meets Book of Mormon.”

But Deadmau5 wasn’t too pleased to hear about the play, which features a cast of characters with names like Joel Zimmermouse (Deadmau5’s real name is Joel Zimmerman), David Goudda, and Avicheese.

According to a cease-and-desist letter obtained by the Guardian, while Deadmau5 appreciated that the venue may have been paying tribute to him, he cannot allow the use of the “Deadmouse” mark (or any other associated marks), as “such use capitalizes on the goodwill and reputation of Zimmerman’s extremely popular marks, name, and personality for commercial gain, and will no doubt create a likelihood of confusion with our client, dilute our client’s rights in the Deadmau5 marks, and cause people to mistakenly believe that Zimmerman endorses” the play.

The letter goes on to demand that the Al Green Theatre immediately cease advertising the event and using the marks, threatening that failure to comply would result in “legal action against you and all parties involved with the unauthorized uses described above and seeking injunctive relief and/or statutory and punitive damages with respect to your numerous acts of infringement.”

The theatre took the letter seriously, though, and posted a disclaimer on the production’s website: “Just so there’s no confusion, Deadmouse the Musical is not written by Deadmau5 or endorsed by Deadmau5. It is a parody. It was written out of love of house music culture.” And that was apparently enough for Deadmau5. “There. The dead mouse musical debacle is settled,” he tweeted. “They have just put up a disclaimer and called it a parody. Moving along now.”