Disney sued over Toy Story 4 Evel Knievel 'knock-off'

Archive photo of Evel Knievel circa 1976Symbol copyright
Getty Pictures

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Evel Knievel changed into an iconic determine of the 1970s on account of his daredevil stunts

The son of famed 1970s stuntman Evel Knievel is suing Disney and Pixar over the daredevil persona Duke Caboom who options in Toy Tale four.

Kelly Knievel has accused the film giants of financially gaining from a personality that they had in line with his father with out searching for permission.

“Evel Knievel didn’t thrill thousands and thousands, destroy his bones and spill his blood simply so Disney may just make a number of cash,” he stated.

Disney denies the allegations.

A spokesperson for Walt Disney Co stated the corporate would shield itself vigorously in opposition to what it known as the meritless claims, the Related Press reviews.

Montana-born Evel Knievel – actual identify Robert Craig Knievel Jnr – used to be famend for his breath-taking bike stunts all the way through the 1960s and 1970s.

He famously jumped over the Caesars Palace fountain in Las Vegas and 13 buses at Wembley Stadium in London, and used a rocket-powered motorcycle to try to pass Snake River Canyon in Idaho.

Many of those makes an attempt resulted in crashes, however he stated claims that he had damaged each and every bone in his frame all the way through his occupation had been overblown.

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Media captionEvel Knievel’s son Kelly Knievel talks about his try to soar over 13 buses at Wembley Stadium

Duke Caboom – voiced by means of Keanu Reeves in Toy Tale four – is described by means of Disney-owned Pixar as a “1970s toy in line with Canada’s largest daredevil and stuntman” who “has self belief and swagger” however “hasn’t ever been in a position to do the stunts as marketed by means of his personal toy business”.

Kelly Knievel, whose Las Vegas-based Okay and Okay Promotions filed the federal trademark lawsuit, has had exposure rights to Evel Knievel since 1978 and is looking for damages totalling greater than $300,000 (£236,000) on fees of false endorsement and unjust enrichment.

The lawsuit alleges similarities within the glance of Knievel and the Caboom persona, and says a propelled stunt toy offered to marketplace the film used to be similar to one among Evel Knievel launched in 1973 and just lately re-released. The Caboom persona used to be additionally advertised as a part of a McDonald’s “Glad Meal” promotion.

  • Do you bear in mind the Evel Knievel Stunt Cycle?

The grievance additionally accuses Disney of getting “expressly prompt forged individuals to keep away from drawing any public affiliation between Duke Caboom and Evel Knievel”, however added that the relationship used to be glaring to observers.

“It’s glaring Duke Caboom is a knock off of Evel Knievel,” Okay&Okay stated in keeping with Disney’s response to the lawsuit. “I do not see a large lengthy line of Disney executives in a position to get on a bike and soar 13 buses, nor do I bear in mind any Canadian daredevils from the 70s.

“Whilst we notice that Disney makes use of their Mickey Mouse legal professionals to aggressively give protection to Disney highbrow belongings, they didn’t search permission to make use of Evel Knievel at any time.”

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