Celebrities

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Applause Can Come with a Big Price Tag - Michael Jordan v. Jewel Food Stores, Inc.

Paying tribute to celebrity can sometimes be an expensive proposition. A Chicago grocery store chain found this out the hard way when the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit handed down its decision in Michael...more

Social Media Fan Accounts: Honoring a Celebrity’s Brand or a Trademark Violation?

Social media has become a powerful marketing tool, allowing celebrities to develop their brands and images with the help of Facebook updates or Tweets that can reach millions of fans at the same time. Given the importance of...more

Advertising Law - Mar 14, 2014

Sue Like Mike: Jordan Wins Reversal in Publicity Rights Suit - An advertisement congratulating Michael Jordan on his induction into the Basketball Hall of Fame constituted commercial speech, the Seventh U.S. Circuit...more

Leggo My Likeness Part V: Grand Theft Right of Publicity?

This year, several important video game lawsuits helped clarify the parameters for using a celebrity’s likeness in video games. Generally speaking, courts have found that, unless you get permission, you can’t put a celebrity...more

Will World Cup 2022 Become World Cup 2023?

SPOILER ALERT – This article reveals that the temperature becomes quite hot in Qatar in the summer months. That paragon of compliance and ethics, the world’s richest and most influential single-sport ruling body...more

Why did Michael Jackson’s family lose their wrongful death case? Because they never had a case!

The news came out late yesterday that the family of Michael Jackson lost their billion-dollar wrongful death case against the concert promoter that was managing Jackson’s upcoming world tour. Jackson’s family contended that...more

Thriller?

The verdict is in. AEG Live is not liable in the Michael Jackson wrongful death suit. An appeal is a foregone conclusion. But will an appeal be a "Thriller?" The standards of review tend to reduce the possibility...more

After Divorce, Who Decides The Child’s Religion?

Last year, actors Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes divorced after a five-year marriage. The cause of the divorce reportedly centered on the religious upbringing of their daughter. Holmes was raised as a Roman Catholic and...more

Advertising Law -- Sep 12, 2013

Actress Claims Sponsorship Deal Soured Over “#spon” - Did the use of a hashtag cause Sensa Products, a weight loss company, to commit fraud and to breach its contract with celebrity endorser and Academy Award-winning...more

Did “Biggest Loser” Contestant Violate Endorsement Contract By Gaining Weight?

Fitness sponsor, FC Online Marketing, Inc. (FCOM), is suing Tara Costa — a 2009 contestant on “The Biggest Loser” — in federal court for gaining too much weight after entering into an agreement to become a representative of...more

R&B Star Claims "Blurred Lines" is Not Substantially Similar to Marvin Gaye or Funkadelic Songs

Last Thursday, R&B star Robin Thicke, along with fellow artists Pharrell Williams and Clifford "T.I." Harris, filed a suit for declaratory judgment in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California against...more

Michael Jackson Wrongful Death Suit Elicits Children’s Testimony

Prince and Paris Jackson, the children of deceased superstar Michael Jackson, have been deposed in a wrongful death suit brought by their grandmother Katherine Jackson against concert promoter AEG for the untimely death of...more

I Entertain Therefore I AM

There was some news yesterday that Will.I.am of the Black Eyed Peas “sued” Pharrell Williams, one of my favorite producers and member of N.E.R.D. and The Neptunes, over the I AM OTHER brand. If you have never heard of...more

Celebrity Endorsements: A Measured Return on Investment

A universally accepted objective of brand marketing is to become aligned with a well-respected, credible and complementary brand with sufficient notoriety to positively influence consumer spending. In recent times,...more

Playing Offense Now to Avoid Playing Defense Later

On draft day, athletes often surround themselves with their family and friends who have supported their professional aspirations. These people are likely celebrating the day their athlete signs a lucrative contract, some of...more

Former NFL Star Chad “Ochocinco” Johnson Serves as a Reminder that Court Decorum Matters

This week, former NFL player and Dancing With the Stars contestant Chad “Ochocinco” Johnson learned an important lesson that all litigants and their attorneys must remember: court decorum matters. Johnson appeared in a...more

Are You Famous Enough?

If you are Samuel R. Mott, founder of Mott’s LLP, apparently the answer is no. Mott’s LLP filed applications to register “MOTT’S” for “baby foods” and “packaged combinations consisting of fresh fruit.” (Serial Nos....more

Taking The Moral High Ground

Photos of Kate Moss snorting cocaine, videos of John Galliano hurling anti-Semitic slurs, throngs of women reporting extra-marital affairs with Tiger Woods… and then there was Lance Armstrong, our cancer fighting champion...more

Celebrity Trends: Baby Pre-Nups?

I almost spilled my coffee when I read the headline that Halle Berry was pregnant at 46 years of age – not because of her age, but because of the catch-phrase that followed: baby pre-nup. I have never heard of an agreement...more

Meet Five Celebrities Who Have Had Worse Tax Days Than Yours

In celebration of Tax Day today, we here at Law Law Land offer tribute to our favorite celebrity/IRS run-ins. Now, lest you think this is just another list airing dirty celebrity tax laundry, think again. This is a classy...more

An Oscar Winner for Compliance

Ben Affleck has certainly had his share of ups and downs in his professional career. He shared an Oscar for Best Original Screenplay for Good Will Hunting with his fellow Bostonian buddy Matt Damon at age 25. Thereafter...more

Kardashians Caught Without Makeup, But Not The Way You’d Expect

For those of you that came looking for pictures of Kim without face paste, this isn’t your post. (Try this one. Yikes.) But if you’re interested in trademarks and the cult of personality, read on....more

Are Dr. Dre’s Claims of Likelihood of Confusion and Dilution Enough to “Beat” His Opponents?

Rapper Dr. Dre and the company he co-founded, Beats Electronics, LLC, are on the offensive at the US Trademark Trial and Appeal Board challenging a multitude of third-party applications for marks which consist of or contain...more

Co-Parenting Often Means Making the Relationship A Priority

E! News host Giuliana Rancic has found herself in the middle of a controversy over a comment she recently made about marriage and parenthood. Rancic said she and her husband Bill put their relationship first and their son...more

Estate Planning: Lessons Learned From Dear Abby Columnist Pauline Friedman Phillips

Estate Planning: Lessons Learned From Dear Abby Columnist Pauline Friedman Phillips Pauline Friedman Phillips died in January 2013 at the age of 94 of natural causes after years of battling Alzheimer’s disease. Phillips...more

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