Feeds

UK judges reject Lucas' appeal in Star Wars helmet case

This is not the judgment he was looking for

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

A trio of senior UK judges have rejected George Lucas' claims that a propmaker for the original Star Wars film had breached his copyright by selling Imperial stormtrooper outfits.

Shepperton-based Andrew Ainsworth made the helmets for the original Star Wars movie - which was largely filmed in the UK. Over 30 years on, he now sells stormtrooper suits and helmets for up to £1800 a pop.

However, Lucasfilm objected to his trade, and won a $10m damages judgment against him in the US courts in 2006 for copyright and trademark infringement and unfair competition.

However, last year a British court declined to enforce the judgment over here. The case was swiftly moved to the court of appeal.

Today, the UK judges rejected Lucasfilm's appeal. They declared the suits were not works of art, and therefore not subject to copyright law. They also declined to enforce the US judgment in the UK.

More broadly, The Telegraph reports that the judges rejected Lucasfilm's claim that the English courts should allow the US courts jurisdiction in cases involving internet trading, even if the trader doesn't have a physical presence there.

This should leave Ainsworth free to sell his outfits to Stormtrooper wannabes throughout the universe - except the US.

However, every Lucas project spawns a sequel and this is no exception - the courts have yet to decide who will foot the legal costs for the case. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
Munich considers dumping Linux for ... GULP ... Windows!
Give a penguinista a hug, the Outlook's not good for open source's poster child
UK fuzz want PINCODES on ALL mobile phones
Met Police calls for mandatory passwords on all new mobes
e-Borders fiasco: Brits stung for £224m after US IT giant sues UK govt
Defeat to Raytheon branded 'catastrophic result'
EU justice chief blasts Google on 'right to be forgotten'
Don't pretend it's a freedom of speech issue – interim commish
Yes, but what are your plans if a DRAGON attacks?
Local UK gov outs most ridiculous FoI requests...
Detroit losing MILLIONS because it buys CHEAP BATTERIES – report
Man at hardware store was right: name brands DO last longer
Snowden on NSA's MonsterMind TERROR: It may trigger cyberwar
Plus: Syria's internet going down? That was a US cock-up
UK government accused of hiding TRUTH about Universal Credit fiasco
'Reset rating keeps secrets on one-dole-to-rule-them-all plan', say MPs
Caught red-handed: UK cops, PCSOs, specials behaving badly… on social media
No Mr Fuzz, don't ask a crime victim to be your pal on Facebook
prev story

Whitepapers

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup
IT departments are embracing cloud backup, but there’s a lot you need to know before choosing a service provider. Learn all the critical things you need to know.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.