Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Right of publicity question of the day, Will Ferrell edition

Here is a story about a Will Ferrell-themed bar.  Given New York's very limited statutory right of publicity, and the fact that the menu items don't seem to use the actor's name, does the display of photos of him in the décor/the reference the owner makes to the bar being a "tribute" to him sufficiently count as use in trade?  If so, would the pictures that many restaurants often display of celebrities who've eaten there also violate NY's right of publicity?  I wonder if this bar owner got very canny advice. 

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