A Manhattan court Thursday dismissed Lindsay Lohan’s lawsuit against the makers of the video game “Grand Theft Auto V,” in which, the actress said, a character was based on her without permission.
Lohan, 30, had argued in a 2014 suit that the character Lacey Jonas is meant to be her in all but name, saying the game — the fifth in the violent crime-drama game series from Rockstar Games, a subsidiary of Take-Two Interactive Software — uses a voice, image and clothing style similar to her own, and like her is besieged by paparazzi. The “Mean Girls” star additionally stated that one game locale, West Hollywood’s famed Chateau Marmont hotel, had been her home for a time.
The five-judge panel of the New York State Supreme Court Appellate Division, First Department, noted Lohan’s argument that the game producers “purposefully used Lohan’s bikini, shoulder-length blonde hair, jewelry, cell phone and ‘signature peace sign’ pose in one image, and used Lohan’s likeness in another image . . . that defendants used her portraits and voice impersonation in a character that is introduced to the player in a ‘side mission.’ ”
The court ruled, however, that New York Civil Rights Law, section 51, which prohibits a person’s “name, portrait, picture or voice” to be used “for advertising purposes or for the purposes of trade” without written consent, did not apply “because this video game does not fall under the statutory definitions of ‘advertising’ or ‘trade.’ ” Instead, “This video game’s unique story, characters, dialogue, and environment, combined with the player’s ability to choose how to proceed in the game, render it a work of fiction and satire.”
Lohan, originally of Cold Spring Harbor and Merrick, had additionally objected to the character’s use in advertising material, but the court ruled the images “are not of Lohan herself, but merely the avatar in the game that Lohan claims is a depiction of her.”
In 2013, a judge dismissed a Lohan’s lawsuit against rapper Pitbull for using her name in his song “Give Me Everything.”