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 as a result 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 according to his father with out in search of permission.

“Evel Knievel didn’t thrill thousands and thousands, spoil his bones and spill his blood in order that Disney may make a number of cash,” he mentioned.

Disney denies the allegations.

A spokesperson for Walt Disney Co mentioned the corporate would protect itself vigorously towards what it referred to as the meritless claims, the Related Press experiences.

Montana-born Evel Knievel – actual title 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 mentioned claims that he had damaged each bone in his frame all the way through his occupation have been overblown.

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

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

Kelly Knievel, whose Las Vegas-based Ok and Ok 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 bought to marketplace the film used to be similar to one among Evel Knievel launched in 1973 and lately re-released. The Caboom persona used to be additionally advertised as a part of a McDonald’s “Glad Meal” promotion.

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

The criticism additionally accuses Disney of getting “expressly prompt forged participants to steer clear of drawing any public affiliation between Duke Caboom and Evel Knievel”, however added that the relationship used to be obtrusive to observers.

“It’s obtrusive Duke Caboom is a knock off of Evel Knievel,” Ok&Ok mentioned in keeping with Disney’s response to the lawsuit. “I do not see a large lengthy line of Disney executives able to get on a motorbike and bounce 13 buses, nor do I keep 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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