If you’re an actor playing a fictional character in an advertising campaign, you better not take any jobs later in your career with a competing brand. At least if you don’t want to get yourself sued. Jerry Lambert, known for playing fictional Sony executive Kevin Butler in a series of PlayStation 3 and PSP commercials between 2009 and 2011, is being sued by Sony Computer Entertainment for showing up in a commercial playing Wii games.
The commercial in question is for Bridgestone tires, wherein Lambert appears playing Mario Kart Wii. Following the commercial’s release, Sony sued both Bridgestone and Lambert’s company Wildcat Creek, claiming that the both are guilty of violating the Lanham Act, which prohibits, amongst other things, trademark dilution.
“We invested significant resources in bringing the Kevin Butler character to life and he’s become an iconic personality directly associated with PlayStation products over the years,” a Sony spokesman told Kotaku, “Use of the Kevin Butler character to sell products other than those from PlayStation misappropriates Sony’s intellectual property, creates confusion in the market and causes damage to Sony.”