Woody Allen sued American Apparel in March 2008 for using his image on their billboards, storefront banners, corporate headquarters, and internet website without permission. The $5 million settlement was reached in May, just days before a jury trial was set to begin in New York City.This is reported to be the largest amount ever paid under the New York Right to Privacy Statute.
Allen issued the following statement today: “American Apparel calculatingly took my name, my likeness, and image and used them publicly to promote their business. Threats and press leaks by American Apparel designed to smear me did not work and a scheme to call a long list of witnesses who had nothing to do with the case was disallowed by the court. I hope this very large settlement will discourage American Apparel and others from doing this type of thing to myself or others in the future.”
The CONSOR team provided consulting support to Michael Zweig and Christian Carbone of Loeb & Loeb LLP, who represented Allen in this litigation. Specifically, CONSOR was engaged to calculate the fair market value for the unauthorized use of Mr. Allen’s name, image and likeness. This tremendous outcome illustrates the importance and substantial value of Mr. Allen’s publicity rights, and the growing importance of publicity rights in general in the entertainment sphere.