How to do the carlton dance

The Surprising Truth Behind The Iconic Fresh Prince 'Carlton Dance'

7 years ago


The Fresh Prince of Bel Air may have wrapped in 1996, but many aspects of the show are timeless.

Perhaps the most enduring of all is the iconic 'Carlton Dance', created by actor Alfonso Ribeiro (and recreated by us every Saturday night).


Now, the actor has spoken out about what inspired the quirky moves, and the revelations were certainly surprising.

Ribeiro actually credits Friends star Courtney Cox, Bruce Springsteen and Eddie Murphy for inspiring the dance.


He explained to Variety magazine: "The Carlton Dance was created when it said in the script: 'Carlton dances.' It was never even intended to be funny; it was just that he was dancing.

"The dance is ultimately Courtney Cox in the Bruce Springsteen video 'Dancing in the Dark.' That's the basis. Or in Eddie Murphy's 'Delirious' video, 'The White Man Dance,' as he called it."

And I said, 'That is the corniest dance on the planet that I know of, so why don't I do that?"

For comparison purposes, here are both dances.

Do you see the similarity?

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The Carlton Dance (Video 2012)

  • Cast & crew
  • User reviews
  • Trivia


  • Video
  • 20122012
  • 5m


4. 5/10




A music video starring over 30 celebrities doing the 'Carlton Dance'.A music video starring over 30 celebrities doing the 'Carlton Dance'.A music video starring over 30 celebrities doing the 'Carlton Dance'.





  • Director
    • Daniel Spink
  • Writer
    • Daniel Spink
  • Stars
    • Daniel Spink
    • Dennis Haskins
    • David Hasselhoff
  • Director
    • Daniel Spink
  • Writer
    • Daniel Spink
  • Stars
    • Daniel Spink
    • Dennis Haskins
    • David Hasselhoff
  • See production, box office & company info
  • See more at IMDbPro
  • Photos

    Top cast

    Daniel Spink

    • Daniel

    Dennis Haskins

    • Dennis

    David Hasselhoff

    Rex Lee

    Summer Altice

    • Summer

    Arielle Kebbel

    • Arielle

    Robert Hoffman

    • Robert

    Sara Paxton

    Andy Milonakis

    Hiromi Oshima

    • Playmate Dancer

    Heather Rene Smith

    • Playmate Dancer

    Serria Tawan

    • Playmate Dancer

    Kara Monaco

    • Playmate Dancer

    Stacy Fuson

    • Playmate Dancer

    Deanna Brooks

    • Playmate Dancer

    Taryn Manning

    Kellin Manning

    • Kellin

    Stacy Keibler

    • Director
      • Daniel Spink
    • Writer
      • Daniel Spink
    • All cast & crew
    • Production, box office & more at IMDbPro

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    User reviews1



    • Release date
      • April 17, 2012 (United States)
    • Country of origin
      • United States
    • Language
      • English
    • Also known as
      • Танец Карлтона
    • Filming locations
      • Los Angeles, California, USA
    • See more company credits at IMDbPro

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    Technical specs

    • Runtime

      5 minutes

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    Fortnite creators sued over game character dance steps / Sudo Null IT News Every month, the creators add various features and features that allow you to keep members of the community while attracting new members.

    However, incidents do happen.

    So, relatively recently, popular dance moves appeared in the game, which almost immediately became the subject of litigation. The problem is the dance called Milly Rock. The dance was created in 2014 by a real musician for his video. And now the dance moves are used in a game with a base of 200 million people.

    The musician, whose name is Terrence Ferguson, seeing all this, went directly to the court. It happened two weeks ago, and almost immediately after Ferguson's lawsuit, complaints came from two more artists. One of them concerns the Carlton Dance, the second - The Floss.

    The subject of the litigation is clear, it is only unclear whether it is possible to copy the dance movements? It turned out that yes, at least in the UK. But there are difficulties here. According to a lawyer from Sheridans, a dance can be made “your own,” but only if its creation is documented and the dance itself is filmed. If the dance simply exists, then the rights to it cannot be obtained.

    This is convenient for the plaintiffs, as there is video evidence of the existence of the dances they invented, similarly, there is a video comparing the movements of game characters and real dancers performing the same dance.

    It is more difficult to determine the right holder. Who owns the rights - the creator, the dancers or the choreographer? How can they prove that they created something new, and did not take advantage of the developments and dance moves that were created earlier? How can they prove that their rights have indeed been violated? These are all difficult questions to be answered by the lawyers involved in the process.

    The USA has its own problems. Here the choreography is protected by law (1976 Copyright Act). But the law sees a difference in a dance invented by a specific person, which is protected by law, and a "public" dance, which is the property of any citizen. This, for example, flamenco, tango, etc. So no one can copy the waltz, and then demand hundreds of millions of US dollars from the "violators" in court.

    In addition, individual dance steps cannot be copyrighted in the USA. Even if a particular dance is protected by law, then individual movements from it can be used freely. Legislators understand that individual steps in different dances can coincide, they are like bricks that make up a building. And if a building can be unique, then a brick is not. The same applies to short combinations of pas.

    And this moment is just very important for the game Fortnite, because the characters perform short fragments of the dance, and not completely copy the entire sequence of movements. Epic Games, the creator of the game, is trying to prove that these are just fragments, so the Fortnite developer cannot be accused of copyright infringement.

    In addition, as mentioned above, it is difficult to prove the authorship of the dance, since it itself consists of separate steps that can be common, used in many other dances.

    Alfonso Ribeiro, creator of Carlton, claims it is his "intellectual property". But this statement is questionable, since many people performed similar pas. Also, Carlton was performed on a TV show for the first time, so there is a problem with determining the copyright holder. Who is it? The creator of the dance, the company that owns the show, or someone else?

    By the way, all of the above is not only related to Fortnite. Other games also use dancing. For example, Forza Horizon 4. Moreover, the authors of the latter have already begun to remove sequences of dance movements, despite the fact that so far no one has filed claims against this company.

    Judging by everything, the trial will be lengthy, and the outcome of all this is difficult to predict. In many countries - case law, so the decisions made by the judges will be very significant for the future of the gaming industry, and not only it.

    Alfonso Ribeiro sued for stealing a dance

    Using real-life dances in games is a well-established and normal practice. On this occasion, Blizzard even held a special contest where they offered fans to repeat the dances from World of Warcraft. These same movements, in turn, were spied on by the greatest dancers of our time - John Travolta, Michael Jackson, Justin Timberlake, Shakira and many others:

    But not everything is calm in the Danish kingdom. Alfonso Ribeiro, who played Carlton in The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, is suddenly outraged that his famous dance was included in the Fortnite game. The developers of the game, Epic Games and People Can Fly, will have to defend their honor in court.

    These incendiary movements became so popular in their time that 19 million views were collected on Youtube:

    The most famous performance of this dance in the world was Marco Monroy, who performed it on a command vehicle framed by rockets flying into the distance:

    In the game, the emotion called "Fresh" quite accurately repeats the movements of the actor, and in the description of the video, the developers even indicated where they got the dance from:

    However, the raging machine of justice cannot be stopped. Ribeiro alleges in the lawsuit that the dance, which appeared in the game on January 2, 2018, steals his intellectual property. By the way, the actor is working on obtaining the rights right now, but his anger fell on Fortnite, perhaps because this game brings developers a lot of money. This is not the first time that Carlton's dance has been used by game developers: it has also been seen in a game like NBA 2016. The speech of the actor's lawyer looks like an angry monologue of the godfather from the movie of the same name:

    Clearly Mr. Ribeiro's intellectual property has been misappropriated by Epic Games for the world's most popular game. The developers made a lot of money selling the “Fresh” emote, but they didn’t bother to pay compensation, they didn’t even ask permission, , the lawyer explains.

    Outrage about stealing dances from black actors boils around Fortnite all year round. The ringleader was the artist Chance The Rapper:

    “Fortnite is worth playing the real rap songs in the dances that brought so much money to the developers. Black performers created and popularized these dances, but never monetized them. Imagine how much money the dancers didn't receive from the players who bought these emotes in the game.

    Learn more