Jerry Lambert, otherwise known as the fictional Sony executive who fronted several PlayStation advertisments, is being sued by former employers Sony due to appearing in an advert for tyre maker Bridgestone's Game On promotion playing with the Wii while acting in a fashion similar to Kevin Butler.
A lawsuit against Bridgestone and Lambert's production company Wildcat Creek Inc. was recently filed, with Sony claiming intellectual property and trademark infringement.
Sony Computer Entertainment America filed a lawsuit against Bridgestone and Wildcat Creek, Inc. on September 11. The claims are based on violations of the Lanham Act, misappropriation, breach of contract and tortious interference with a contractual relationship. We invested significant resources in bringing the Kevin Butler character to life and he’s become an iconic personality directly associated with PlayStation products over the years. Use of the Kevin Butler character to sell products other than those from PlayStation misappropriates Sony’s intellectual property, creates confusion in the market, and causes damage to Sony.
Bridgestone's promotion offered a $70 American Express reward card or a Nintendo Wii for those who bought four of their tyres. Lambert was seen showcasing the promotion in the video, which has now been pulled on YouTube by Bridgestone. He has since been edited out of the ad, with the new version displayed below.
Late last month, the Northern District of California court was told by Sony's attorney that they were close to revolving the issue with Bridgestone. However, the platform holder now has until October 12 to either withdraw its lawsuit or continue it via a hearing.