Professional wrestler Booker T. Huffman is the latest celebrity personality to bring a lawsuit against a games industry behemoth, this time game publisher Activision for allegedly including a “Call of Duty: Black Ops 4” based on the likeness of a comic book character developed by Huffman.
“When seen side-by-side there can be no question that this character was copied from G.I. Bro. From the hair, body type and clothing, right down to facial expressions, the similarities are too profound to be an accident,” said Micah Dortch of the Dallas office of the Potts Law Firm. Huffman is represented by both Dortch and attorney Patrick Zummo with the Law Offices of Patrick Zummo.
The complaint, which is available to read in full on Scribd, maintains there are visual similarities between Huffman’s G.I. Bro character from the comic book “G.I. Bro and the Dragon of Death” and “Black Ops 4″‘s Prophet. “They could have drawn him any way they wanted. But they chose to steal Booker T’s ‘G. I. Bro,’” it reads.
Huffman’s G.I. Bro, which is based on an earlier alter ego, is described in the complaint as a “retired special operations solder, fighting an old enemy he thought he had finished off years before, with the support of his old military friends.”
Prophet, on the other hand, is a cybernetically enhanced “specialist” soldier in “Black Ops 4” multiplayer who has replaced body parts with mechanical upgrades. But both characters share a similar appearance, each styled as rugged soldiers with long deadlocks and cap. “There is no doubt that Defendants copied “G. I. Bro,” the complaint continues.
“Booker T. has devoted a significant amount of time and money creating and organically growing his G.I. Bro character,” continues Dortch. “That entrepreneurial investment should not be erased by such a blatant act of copyright infringement by a gaming juggernaut.”
Huffman’s complaint follows a recent rise in the number of lawsuits filed against game makers by notable entertainers. Developer Epic Games has experienced the brunt of it, due to its use of real-world dances in “Fortnite”. Last year, actor Alfonso Ribeiro filed complaints regarding his “Carlton Dance” which he created on the TV series “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.” Instagram-famous Backpack Kid filed as well, since his dance which spawned “The Floss” emote has almost become synonymous with “Fortnite” dances — a dance which he originally performed on Saturday Night Live in 2017. Actress Lindsay Lohan famously sued Rockstar Games over a “Grand Theft Auto” character she alleged was based on her; however, the court shot down the complaint.