It seems all sorts of musicians are lining up around the block to take a whack at Activision. Now, Maroon 5 frontman, Adam Levine, is suing Activision over the misuse of his likeness in the 2009 game, Band Hero. If this sounds familiar, it’s because it should. Both No Doubt and Courtney Love (on behalf of Kurt Cobain) filed the same type of lawsuit in 2009.
Levine’s case stems from the fact that he was supposedly left in the dark about Activision using his likeness for songs outside the Maroon 5 catalogue in Band Hero, namely “She Will Be Love.” Instead, gamers can use Levine as a frontman for any type of song, including tracks typically belted by female vocalists. Levine views this as a breach in contract, so he’s rallying the lawyers and hoping to walk away from the situation with a pretty penny.
But here’s the thing…
Not only should these musicians read the fine print on the contracts they are signing, but Levine is filing this lawsuit rather late. At least No Doubt and Courtney Love sued Activision the same year the game came out that defiled their party’s likenesses. Levine, on the other hand, is two years late to the situation. Is he really just now finding out that players can make a digital Levine sing Hilary Duff’s “So Yesterday?” (A step up, mayhaps?)
Levine has quite the uphill battle with this one. For reference, No Doubt’s case is still in the process of moving through the courts, and that started in 2009. This should be a lesson to everyone, famous or otherwise, that you should always carefully read the fine print of any contract and ask the questions you want answers to before signing it. Case closed.