LIL JON filed a federal lawsuit on September 26th in Atlanta for almost $30 million from Larry Flynt Productions for allegedly using his name and likeness in the adult film, Phat Tuesday, without his permission . . .
Lil Jon Files $30 Million Suit Against Larry Flynt
Once a hip-hop/rap nightclub DJ, Lil Jon is putting Larry Flint in the hot seat with the latest lawsuit seeking $30 million for allegedly using his name without his permission in the adult film "Phat Tuesday".
Stated in the rapper's lawsuit, Larry Flint Productions, which is best known for the magazine Hustler acquired video from a subcontractor called Category 5 of the rap artist onstage as well as behind the scenes in a 2004 concert in New Orleans. Before using the footage, Category 5 was supposed to clear the footage usage with TVT Records, which they failed to do according to the lawsuit. $75,000 is asked for that breach alone.
The Hustler film "Phat Tuesday" is about five women who go to Mardi Gras in New Orleans and attend a Lil Jon concert, only to lead to having sex with men and each other. the DVD cover for this film uses Littlejohn's likeness in a composite photograph featuring two of the actresses listed in the film. The words, "Featuring Lil Jon, King of Crunk" are also plastered on the DVD cover, which Lil Jon states he was unaware of the usage until the release in February.
According to the lawsuit breach of contract, false advertising, infringement of right to publicly an appropriation of name and likeness are a few of the claims made in the lawsuit. He also goes on to say he's been deprived of royalties, revenue and reputation. if his name had been licensed properly, he estimates he would've earned $500,000 based on previous authorized videos.
According to a statement from Lil Jon, his name and likeness are "valuable commodities, with significant secondary meaning and goodwill attached to them." That goodwill has been "tarnished significantly by being linked improperly to Hustler and Larry Flynt," and the suit estimates that the lost goodwill "is not less than $30 million."
Lil’ Jon Extends Lawsuit To Larry Flynt Over Porn Film, Seeks $30 Million In Damages
Sep. 29, 2005 - Atlanta, GA
On Monday, September 26th, the inescapable rap producer, Lil’ Jon, headed to the Atlanta Federal Court to file a lawsuit against Larry Flynt, the infamous owner of the adult magazine, Hustler. The situation involves Larry Flynt Productions arranging and producing an adult DVD that uses an unauthorized image of Lil’ Jon as a marketing tool.
The filed lawsuit alleges that Larry Flynt Productions (LFP) received on-stage and backstage promotional video footage from another company, Category 5, which in February 2004 had shot a Lil’ Jon and the Eastside Boyz concert, legitimately, in New Orleans. The suit wraps Category 5 up in the lawsuit as well since that particular production company made no attempts to clear the usage of Lil’ Jon’s name and likeness for the LFP-released porno with Jon’s record label, TVT Records. A $75,000 dollar claim was set against Category 5, alone.
LFP then used that illicit footage for a February 2005 issued film, Phat Tuesday. Lil’ Jon is establishing the claim that he would not receive revenue or royalties for the project on the illegal terms of false advertising, breach of contract, infringement of right to publicity and appropriation of name and likeness. The hit producer also stated that his image and name are “valuable commodities, with significant secondary meaning and goodwill attached to them” and that the goodwill has been “tarnished significantly by being linked improperly to Hustler and Larry Flynt.”
According to Lil’ Jon, born name Jonathan Smith, he also stated that Phat Tuesday “glutted the market” and would therefore prevent him from releasing his own project in the same vein. Apparently, the mega-star already had plans in the works to release a DVD entitled Lil Jon & the East Side Boyz Vivid Vegas Party later this year through the porn conglomerate, Vivid Video. Additionally, a follow-up DVD for 2006 was planned, as well, with the expected title to be Lil Jon & the East Side Boyz Nightclubbin’.
The filed suit estimates that, according to Jonathan Smith, the lost goodwill “is not less than $30 million.” Check back to SoundSlam.com for updates on this Lil’ Jon story and more.
Additional Comments about Lil Jon's Lawsuit
Jennifer McLune wrote:
Please don't take this to mean that Lil Jon is anti-porn. He's just pro-getting paid. Him and the Eat Side Boys are deeply tied with the sex industry. And their music and music videos are some of the most woman-hating and pornographic in Hip Hop today. Hip hop has yet to take a stand against pornography and this lawsuit is in no way an example of that.
The surprising aspect of the reason for the lawsuit, however, is that it was not induced because of Lil Jon being concerned about his image, but because he plans on releasing some controversial videos himself, but “Phat Tuesday” has only “glutted the market”.
Later this year, Lil Jon & the East Side Boyz planned to release a video called, “Lil Jon & the East Side Boyz Vivid Vegas Party”.
We don't know what's worse having your likeness used without your permission, or caring more about the fact that the video is now competition to your own videos.