Blocboy JB is taking action against the creators of Fortnite, alleging the video game is using his popular “Shoot” dance without permission and proper compensation.
Earlier this week, the Memphis-bred rapper filed a lawsuit in federal court against the developers at Epic Games. He’s seeking damages for copyright infringement, violation of the right of publicity and unfair competition.
“Epic has a history of brazenly misappropriating the likeness and intellectual property of talent, particularly African-American artists,” Blocboy’s lawyer said of the suit.
He continued, “When it comes to licensing, Epic seems to have no problem doing licensing deals with other multi-billion dollar companies like the NFL and Marvel Studios – but it refuses to compensate individual artists like Bloc.”
In his suit, JB claims that Epic failed to approach him in licensing the dance for avatars in Fortnite to perform. Instead, he alleges that Epic simply renamed the choreography — which is leading many to believe, incorrectly, that Epic invented the dance craze.
The “Look Alive” artist was initially encouraged to pursue legal action by his fans, after inquiring via social media if he should sue.
“I just don’t think it’s fair what Epic is doing,” JB said in a press release.
“I started the dance and made it popular through my music. Epic didn’t ask me if they could put it in Fortnite.“
The multi-platinum artist joins fellow rapper 2 Milly, actor Alfonso Ribeiro and others who have sued “Fortnite” over appropriation of their dance moves.
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