Alfonso Ribeiro who we know from his portrayal of Carlton Banks in The Fresh Prince of Bel Air sitcom has sued Epic over a Fortnite dance. Ribeiro's lawyers claim that Epic are falsely presenting the signature dance as their own creation.
Epic Games are facing another lawsuit over the unauthorised use of dance moves in Fortnite. Following 2 Milly's , The Fresh Prince of Bel Air star Alfonso Ribeiro is also suing the company for stealing his signature "Carlton Dance" which is dubbed as "Fresh" in Fortnite.
Just like rapper 2 Milly and Scrubs' Donald Faison, Alfonso Ribeiro is also pointing out that Epic made a fortune selling the Fresh emote and are acting like they're the creators of the popular dance. "Epic has earned record profits off downloadable content in the game, including emotes like Fresh" is elaborated in the statement.
Ribeiro is currently filing a copyright for the dance and according to his legal representatives, Epic have yet to contact the actor and ask for permission or offer compensation for his contribution. "Epic has failed to compensate or even ask permission from Mr. Ribeiro for the use of his likeness and iconic intellectual property," according to Ribeiro's lawyer.
Additionally, Ribeiro is also suing 2K for doing the same thing in their basketball game series. He's represented by David Hecht of Pierce Bainbridge Beck Price & Hecht LLP who is also the man behind 2 Milly's case against Epic.
Epic are yet to publically respond to these lawsuits at the time of writing. This may be due to American laws which state that the US Copyright office doesn't grant copyrights for individual dance moves and is treating them more like phrases or general expressions.
Epic probably feels safe as long as Ribeiro and 2 Milly don't actually have any formal ownership of their dances.
One thing that could prove to be a problem for Epic is the monetisation part of the whole conundrum, as many of those suing wouldn't be doing so if the dance moves were free. We here at AltChar aren't legal experts by any measure, but we can sit tight and patiently watch things unravel with the best of them.