2 Live Crew Rapper Barred From Using Stage Name Luke Skyywalker
LOS ANGELES (AP) _ Rapper Luther Campbell of 2 Live Crew was barred from using the stage name Luke Skyywalker pending the outcome a federal trademark suit that claims the name belongs to Lucasfilm Ltd.
U.S. District Judge James Ideman ruled Wednesday that Campbell’s use of the name has ″created and will continue to create a likelihood of confusion with plaintiff’s trademark″ movie character Luke Skywalker.
Lucasfilm earlier filed a $300 million trademark infringement lawsuit, arguing during a March hearing that the singer, known for his profanity-laced lyrics, had soiled the image of its ″Star Wars″ movie character.
The lawsuit said the character Luke Skywalker, the youthful hero of the ″Star Wars″ movie trilogy, has a ″highly moral, wholesome aspect.″
Lucasfilm lawyer Charles Shephard said the judge’s order will remain in effect until the legal issues are resolved. He predicted a trial was at least six months away.
Campbell, 29, is the leader of 2 Live Crew and the group’s record label, Luke Skyywalker Records. The band’s album ″As Nasty as They Wanna Be″ has sold more than 1.2 million copies.
The album has been banned in Florida’s Lee and Broward counties because of the sexual nature of its lyrics.
″The nature of defendants’ unauthorized use of plaintiff’s trademark, particularly in connection with the sexually explicit recordings which many consider to be obscene, will dilute the distinctive quality of plaintiff’s trademark,″ the judge said in his ruling.
Campbell attorney Howard Frumes had no comment on the ruling.