Steven Spielberg is denying he owes $10 million to the man suing over “Jurassic World” and the legendary director wants the case thrown out of court.
Spielberg’s Amblin Entertainment filed court docs in the suit brought by a man named Frederick Zaccheo over the use of the slogan “Save the Dinos,” which he licensed to producers for the film’s marketing campaign.
According to court documents obtained by The Blast, Amblin argues that Zaccheo does not have the valid trademarks to file the lawsuit and argues the use of the slogan was protected by the first amendment. He wants the entire case thrown out.
Universal City Studios even counter-sued Zaccheo, accusing him of breaching their original deal. They claim to have paid him $50,000 to use the phrase but with the promise to not interfere with the film promotion. They point to his lawsuit as the interference he promised to avoid and are seeking damages.
As The Blast first reported, Zaccheo sued Universal City Studios and Amblin Entertainment claiming they screwed him over in a merchandising deal.
Zaccheo says he entered into a deal giving them the right to use the slogan “Save the Dinos” as part of a marketing campaign for the movie.
The slogan was used in a series of viral videos featuring Bryce Dallas Howard‘s character in the movie, Claire Dearing, and a fictional organization called the Dinosaur Protection Group.
Zaccheo claims they struck a deal for $50,000 but he claims he insisted they not use “SAVE THE DINOS to sell clothing … and not use SAVE THE DINOS to promote competing charitable, environmental, animal rights or endangered species efforts.”
He also says the agreement made certain that any merchandising done for the film using the slogan always had to use it “in connection with the other branding associated with the JURASSIC PARK / JURASSIC WORLD franchise.”
Zaccheo says he wanted to avoid the “use of the phrase in connection with the upcoming film, and its anticipated massive advertising and marketing campaigns and substantial merchandising efforts, to interfere with his project and its goals.”
Lo and behold, Zaccheo claims Universal and Amblin breached the deal by selling shirts, socks and other clothing items with just the slogan on them and nothing else, much like his own Dinosaur Project merchandise (see below).
Zaccheo is suing for breach of contract and trademark infringement and is seeking damages in excess of $10 million.
The case is ongoing.