Sony sues for 'Kevin Butler character' playing Mario Kart
Well, this is awkward
Art by LoveChin88
[Update: Here is a revised version of the commercial with Jerry Lambert removed.]
Sony is in the process of suing Bridgestone and Wildcat Creek Inc over a recent TV commercial where a character played by actor Jerry Lambert enjoys playing Mario Kart Wii for a few seconds. Jerry Lambert is the actor who had played Kevin Butler, the fictional Vice President of various Playstation departments, in Sony's "It Only Does Everything" and "Long Live Play" advertising campaigns.
Who is Wildcat Creek Inc? Well, according to Corporation Wiki, they are a company owned by none other than Jerry Lambert.
Sony is claiming damages based on Bridgestone's use of the Kevin Butler character to "sell products other than those of Playstation". The thing is, the character that Jerry Lambert played in the Bridgestone commercial was not Kevin Butler. He wasn't even advertising a Nintendo product. He was just a Bridgestone worker getting into Mario Kart Wii when he should have been working (in order to help promote a Wii giveaway contest through Bridgestone).
The main thing I'm taking from this is that if I ever appear as a character in a Sony commercial, then I'm never going to let myself be filmed enjoying a non-Sony product ever again. I hope Marcus learns that lesson as well, lest he gets his ass sued for being caught on camera enjoying a rousing game of Donkey Kong.
Check out the full statement from Sony below.
Sony sues Kevin Butler actor (update: Sony comments) [VentureBeat]
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Sony Computer Entertainment America filed a lawsuit against Bridgestone and Wildcat Creek, Inc. on September 11. The claims are based on violations of the Lanham Act, misappropriation, breach of contract and tortious interference with a contractual relationship. We invested significant resources in bringing the Kevin Butler character to life and he’s become an iconic personality directly associated with PlayStation products over the years. Use of the Kevin Butler character to sell products other than those from PlayStation misappropriates Sony’s intellectual property, creates confusion in the market, and causes damage to Sony.
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