Apple has filed a lawsuit against Vasyl Moskalenko, director of the movie “Apple-Man”, after its trademark registration application was approved by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. The company has filed a 467-page court filing claiming that users would be misled into believing that “Apple-Man” is “associated with, or approved, endorsed, or provided by Apple,”.
Apple takes “Apple-Man” to court
As reported by iPhone in Canada, Vasyl Moskalenko posted a video message to Apple sharing his side of the story and how he is open to negotiations with Apple. His movie, an action-comedy, is not about Apple, the company, but about apples, the popular fruit (not made by Apple).
The short film had received successful funding through Kickstarter and was shot in Kyiv, Ukraine.
Apple-Man is an action comedy film, that pays homage to famous superhero sagas. The main character is a superhero Apple-Man who has a superpower to levitate apples. The film was crowdfunded through Kickstarter, with pledges reaching €101,717 (about US$120,000). The principal photography of Apple-Man was shot in Kyiv, in authentic Ukrainian locations, including Kyiv fortress.
Moskalenko says that his movie does not mention Apple as a company, nor does it mention any of Apple’s products like MacBooks, iPhones, and iPads. He said in the video that he has nothing but respect for Apple, and understands that the company wants to protect its business but he has no intention of harming the brand.
The director is even happy to share a final cut of the film with the company so they can judge it for themselves. The film does not compete with anything that Apple does or makes and simply revolves around the story of a superhero with a superpower that is based on apples.
If somehow the “Apple-Man” trademark application is denied, Maskalenko believes that it will be equivalent to trademark bullying and might allow Apple to delete the film following its release.
This is not the first time that Apple has gone after small creators and business owners in an effort to protect its IP. Previously, the company had taken legal action against Prepear, over alleged similarities in its logo. The small meal prep business had no choice but to enter into negotiations and make modifications to its logo to settle the dispute with Apple.
Check out the trailer for “Apple-Man” below and notice how it has zero references that would make you think about Apple, the company.