Robot 6

DC Comics, Disney and Sanrio sue party company over costumes

From the Party Animals website

DC Comics, Disney and Sanrio have sued a California birthday party entertainment company for copyright and trademark infringement, alleging that it’s using counterfeit costumes of such well-known characters as Mickey Mouse, Winnie the Pooh, Superman, Wonder Woman and Hello Kitty.

Law 360 reports that the lawsuit, filed last week in federal court in Los Angeles, accuses Party Animals and owner Jason Lancaster of using and renting costumes resembling the companies’ characters and logos for birthday and corporate parties, in violation of copyright and trademark laws.

“[Party Animals] is actively selling, offering for sale, renting, distributing or manufacturing unlicensed and counterfeit costumes, which incorporate unauthorized likenesses of the animated or live action characters or other logos owned by plaintiffs,” the complaint said. “[The] defendants have never been authorized by the plaintiffs to distribute the plaintiffs’ copyrighted properties.”

The Party Animals website includes a disclaimer that states, “Look-a-like Characters are not officially licensed. We DO NOT USE OR HAVE COPYRIGHTED OR LICENSED MATERIAL, COSTUMES, OR NAMES. We also aren’t affiliated with any companies that hold copyrights so don’t ask for characters relating to copyrighted names.” The company’s “Look A Like Characters” list includes entries for “Green Superhero” and “Spider-Hero,” while a photo page includes thumbnail shots of people dressed as Captain America, the Joker, Buzz Lightyear, Robin, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Supergirl, among many others.

DC, Disney and Sanrio claim use of the allegedly infringing costumes “will cause irreparable injury” if allowed to persist. They seek $150,000 for each infringing copyright and $200,000 for each infringing trademark — increased to $2 million if the court determines the infringement is deliberate.

Note: The article has been edited to correct the name of the defendant’s company, which was misstated in the original lawsuit.

News From Our Partners

Comments

8 Comments

Have you seen the Halloween costume catalog with the Black Lantern Flash?

Really? Black Lantern Flash?

Yes, really: http://www.partysupplies.com/Blackest-Night-Zombie-Flash-Adult-Costume-p/803296.htm?gclid=CJeSqIb0nrICFcXe4AodlR0AvQ

Mommy, I don’t know if i want to be a azombie htis year, or the Flash?”

Why, dear, now you can be both!”

“Yay, Geoff Johns!”

Mysterious Stranger

September 5, 2012 at 10:44 am

Looks like they’ve taken down the offending photos as I couldn’t find them on the website. The only ones I saw that are infringing are the Optimus Prime and Curious George costumes.

Mysterious Stranger

September 5, 2012 at 10:46 am

Never mind. I found the “more pictures” page.

I guess those “actors” down at Hollywood and Highland in L.A. that charge for a photo with them might be next on the hit list.

– “will cause irreparable injury”

Are they for real with this? Does this company do enough business every year renting costumes that DC Comics and DISNEY feel threatened by them?!?!?!?! So threatened that they have to sue them for up to $2million??

The greed is palpable.

Wow.

Well they are gone now. This comment is at the bottom of the party characters page. “We do not and have never carried any other companies copyrighted/trademark characters. At parties and most of the time our characters act more like clowns.”

I like that the word “Testimonials” is misspelled on their site. Nice.

Hi. The Company being sued is Party Animals not The Party Animals LLC. The lawyers are removing our name from the list as we are not the same Company from Orange County that is being sued. The Party Animals LLC is a show for kids and we are based in LA. Our website is http://www.thepartyanimalslive.com The company being sued is called Party Animals and website is the one listed here partyanimalsoc.com.

Leave a Comment

 


Browse the Robot 6 Archives