Remember Chanel the receptionist from Rob Dyrdek’s Fantasy Factory? Well she’s a rapper now, and appears to have learned the old adage that no press is bad press.
After being lampooned across the internet for comparing her rap skills to Drake and Kanye West, Chanel doubled down by releasing “Sharon Stoned,” a smoke-filled opus that’s equal parts parody and homage to the iconic actress––not to mention a product-placement bonanza for all manner of cannabis consumables. The song’s hook is comprised exclusively of the words “Sharon” and “Stone,” repeated over and over again. According to the complaint, Chanel (real name Chelsea Dudley) repeats the name “Sharon Stone” 33 times, and “Sharon” 99 times.
If that weren’t enough, the accompanying video (released back on April 20th) features recreations of famous Sharon Stone movie scenes (think Casino, or the interrogation scene from Basic Instinct). Cannabis products with prominently-featured brand names appear gratuitously throughout.
The real Sharon Stone is less than pleased. The Nobel Peace Summit Award-winning entertainer filed suit in California federal court last week alleging violations of her statutory and common law right of publicity, as well as violations of the Lanham Act. In the complaint, Ms. Stone alleges that the song and accompanying video create a false association between Chanel, the featured pot products, and the real Sharon Stone. By exploiting her name, likeness, image, identity, and persona, Ms. Stone alleges that defendants are not only denying her just compensation for use of her name and likeness, but are further causing irreparable damage to her reputation and goodwill.
Ms. Stone seeks preliminary and permanent injunctive relief, compensatory damages, as well as punitive damages on the grounds that Chanel and her team have deliberately and maliciously engaged in activity designed to mislead and confuse consumers in clear violation of the Lanham Act’s ban on false designation of origin and unfair competition.
We can’t wait to see how this progresses. Stay tuned for details.
The case is Stone v. Dudley et al., Case No. 2:19-cv-09492 in U.S. District Court in the Central District of California.