Sunday, August 3, 2008

Shepperton Loses Lawsuit Again

I first posted about the case of Andrew Ainsworth's unlicensed replica armor back in April 2007 (click here for the background info). It took months to come to a conclusion, but on July 31 a British High Court judge ruled in favor of George Lucas and Lucasfilm regarding ownership rights of Star Wars costumes including the iconic white-armored Stormtrooper design. While many argue that Ainsworth/Shepperton's costumes are highly accurate, the costuming community also knows that many of AA's production claims are misleading (if not altogether false) and that he is breaking a cardinal rule---blatantly seeking to profit from someone else's designs and hard work. In fact, Lucasfilm's Vice President Howard Roffman made the following statement:

"We do not intend to use this ruling to discourage our fans from expressing their imagination, creativity and passion for Star Wars through the costumes and props they make for their personal use... Rather, we see the Court's decision as reaffirming that those who seek to illegally profit from Star Wars will be brought to task, wherever they may be."
You can read a press release of the outcome here.

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