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Soccer legend Pele suing Samsung over doppelganger

Gooooooool? More like 'nooooooo.'
Soccer legend Pele suing Samsung over doppelganger
Edgar Alvarez
Edgar Alvarez|@abcdedgar|March 30, 2016 7:56 PM

Korean tech giant Samsung isn't a stranger to lawsuits, with its most famous legal battle being that never-ending one against Apple. But now, Samsung is about to face another legal challenge, after soccer legend Pelé has filed a $30 million lawsuit over a lookalike featured in a New York Times newspaper ad. Pelé, whose actual birth name is Edson Arantes do Nascimento (Brazilian football players often shorten their full name), alleges that Samsung broke off negotiations with him for an advertising campaign and instead hired someone who "very closely" resembles his image, according to a complaint filed in a federal court in Chicago.

As Reuters reports, the lawsuit documents, filed by the firm which owns his trademark and publicity rights worldwide, called Pelé IP Ownership LLC, also point to Samsung's use of a photo portraying a "modified bicycle or scissors-kick, perfected and famously used by Pelé" in its advertisement. (Here's a picture, in case you've never seen Pelé's trademark move before.)

The ad in question. [Image credit: Webber Represents]

We reached out to Samsung and a spokesperson said the company had no comment on the lawsuit.

Much like Pelé, other celebrities are keen to keep control of their image for marketing purposes. Lindsay Lohan (Freaky Friday, Mean Girls), for instance, is currently involved in a legal situation with Rockstar Games: She sued the developer over the likeness of a character in Grand Theft Auto V. Even though these two cases are different, this shows that these personalities aren't afraid to go to court when need be.

Soccer legend Pele suing Samsung over doppelganger