bit-gamer.net

Rockstar fights off Cyrpus Hill singer CJ lawsuit

Rockstar fights off Cyrpus Hill singer CJ lawsuit

The appearance of CJ was described as too generic to specifically be the likeness of Michael S. Washington.

Rockstar Games has won a lawsuit brought against it by a Cyprus Hill backup singer who was trying to claim $250m for using him as a model for Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas' lead character, CJ.

According to Hollywood Reporter, Singer Michael S. Washington met with Rockstar in 2003 and claims he was tricked into sharing details of his life. Washington launched the lawsuit in 2010 after seeing the character that he felt looked like him.

Although Washington's name even appears in the credits of San Andreas as a model, it was ruled that there was no violation of publicity rights and that CJ's appearance was too generic to be specifically Washington. The judge ruled that Washington would have needed to show evidence such as similar tattoos, birthmarks or other physical features in order to prove the violation.

'Washington has presented no evidence demonstrating that the plot or characters of GTA: San Andreas have any relevance to his life or his purported fame,' reads the California court's appellate decision.

Rockstar's publisher, Take-Two, won the case using a transformative use defence, an ill defined part of fair use laws in the US that allows for commentary, criticism and parody of a copyrighted work or material.

Although in other media publicity rights has paid out large sums of damages, how far video game characters can lead to this is a source of debate in the law. Although it settled out of court earlier this year, Activision's legal spat with No Doubt lead singer Gwen Stefani for the use of her likeness to sing non-No Doubt songs in Band Hero was deemed to not qualify for the transformative use defence.

Rockstar Games recently announced that Grand Theft Auto 5 is aiming for a release in the first or second quarter of 2013 and will be set in Los Santos, one of the three fictional cities featured in San Andreas.

16 Comments

Discuss in the forums Reply
TheDodoKiller 5th November 2012, 09:39 Quote
So What?

It's the American lifestyle, for certain.

'THAT GUY LOOKS LIKE ME $250,000,000'

I don't think Rockstar even made that much on sales?
PingCrosby 5th November 2012, 09:44 Quote
'Rockstar fights off Cyrpus Hill singer CJ lawsuit'.......erm Cyprus?...sorry for being a grammar nazi
ulfar 5th November 2012, 09:52 Quote
cyprus hill (??) or cypress hill (hip hop)? (most confused).
DragunovHUN 5th November 2012, 10:02 Quote
I love how the guy sued because of his "fame" and then bit-tech can't even spell the band's name properly :D

That's like... touiché
Shirty 5th November 2012, 10:03 Quote
Derpus Hill.
Adnoctum 5th November 2012, 11:42 Quote
Although initially alarmed by this result, I now feel that this ruling will have little effect on my own lawsuit against Rocksteady, Eidos and Cthulhu et al for stealing my appearance, mannerisms and personal history in the creation of the character Harley Quinn.
I'm certain that my face make-up, pig-tails, brightly coloured tight leather costumes and bat-s**t insanity is both distinctive and unique enough to satisfy a judge.
I'll get my 3.4 bazillion groats.
blacko 5th November 2012, 13:13 Quote
i look like mario. Should i sue nintendo?
Phalanx 5th November 2012, 13:21 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by PingCrosby
"Rockstar fights off Cyrpus Hill singer CJ lawsuit". Erm, Cyprus? Sorry for being a grammar nazi.

Fixed that for you. Sorry for being a grammar nazi. ;)
Shirty 5th November 2012, 13:49 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by blacko
i look like mario. Should i sue nintendo?

They might give you a job, don't jump too soon!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phalanx
Fixed that for you. Sorry for being a grammar nazi. ;)

Touché

B)
Lance 5th November 2012, 13:50 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by blacko
i look like mario. Should i sue nintendo?

When you're done with that can you come and fix my radiators and the leak under the sink?
Bloodburgers 5th November 2012, 15:22 Quote
You'll be lucky if they don't turn around and sue your for parents for pirating copyrighted content. Unless you are older than Mario of course.
fluxtatic 6th November 2012, 06:45 Quote
You may have fixed the spelling of Cyprus, but you've still got the name wrong - like ulfar said, it's 'Cypress' (they're not Cypriots, they're from LA.)

Also, why did Washington file this 5 years after SA came out?
BLC 6th November 2012, 13:14 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by fluxtatic
You may have fixed the spelling of Cyprus, but you've still got the name wrong - like ulfar said, it's 'Cypress' (they're not Cypriots, they're from LA.)

Not quite - see the title:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Article
Rockstar fights off Cyrpus Hill singer CJ lawsuit
.

I'm off to see if Cyrpus is as nice a holiday destination as Cyprus is.

And yes, it's Cypress Hill... A quick google will tell you that.
BLC 6th November 2012, 13:25 Quote
Back on topic, however... Perhaps Allison Janney, Warner Bros or NBC should also sue Rockstar? After all, their much earlier TV show also featured a character called "C.J." - clearly Rockstar ripped them off!

(All of the aforementioned was extremely heavy sarcasm, for those of us who lack a Joke Detector; it only came to mind because the other half has recently decided to embark on the epic undertaking of watching The West Wing again.)
Shirty 6th November 2012, 13:29 Quote
This is a successful Bit-tech staff troll if ever I saw one.
PingCrosby 8th November 2012, 10:16 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phalanx
Quote:
Originally Posted by PingCrosby
"Rockstar fights off Cyrpus Hill singer CJ lawsuit". Erm, Cyprus? Sorry for being a grammar nazi.

Fixed that for you. Sorry for being a grammar nazi. ;)

Thats well wickid innit bruv, fanks
Log in

You are not logged in, please login with your forum account below. If you don't already have an account please register to start contributing.



Discuss in the forums